The name Craven Faults comes from a formation of geologically significant crustal fractures across the Pennines. It’s an apt choice for the epic music contained on Standers.
If ancient rock formations were to develop an interest in sound production and gained access to a pile of Harmonia and Cluster vinyl, alongside a bank of analogue and modular machinery to realise their musical vision, the outcomes could well resemble Standers: vast, sturdy chunks of sound equipped with the majestic, harsh beauty of desolate uplands, colliding, combining and reforming at an unhurried pace that offers a musical approximation of the glacial speed that the landscape around us shifts over the course of centuries.
Craven Faults’ 2020 debut Erratics and Unconformities (and series of early EPs) contained idle moments which suggested that the machines had been left to correspond with each other while the human(s) in charge of composition and production had popped out for a stroll. (The musician(s) behind the project remains anonymous, which adds to the overall impression that these ageless, elemental sounds were dug out from the soil.) A more immediately alluring offering despite many of the tracks not thinking twice about hopping over the ten-minute mark, Standers is rife with rhythmic suspense and slowly evolving melodic build-ups – hooks, even – that are guaranteed to pull in and hold on to the attentive listener.
The result is a hypnotic, idiosyncratic gem. Much of electronic music is designed for dark nocturnal interior spaces. Standers is more evocative of a windswept ramble over steep hillsides in search of post-industrial ruins and ancient monuments.
Subscribers to Loud And Quiet now receive a limited edition flexi disc of a rare track with their copy of the magazine
This month’s disc is from Detroit punk band Protomartyr