Electronic producer/musician Darren Cunningham aka Actress and the London Contemporary Orchestra (LCO) team up for the collaborative Ninja Tune album Lageos. For the record, the LCO recorded the individual instrumental parts as stems at Spitfire Studio then sent them to Actress to manipulate, in turn delivering some truly unique new pieces. LCO also went on to reinterpret Actress classics "Hubble" and "N.E.W" among others from his catalogue.
"In many ways the collaboration is about exploring an ambiguity of sound that sits between electronic and acoustic spaces; something that we're aiming to push further as part of the live shows," says the LCO's Hugh Brunt of the collaboration. "For much of the set we look to realise as close as possible the timbres and colours of Actress' electronics through acoustic means (which he in turn responds to); something of a physicalisation of those synthesised or sampled sounds. That has involved utilising various accessories: plastic bags (for white noise or to emulate an EQ'd hi-hat); keys; Blu-Tack (to dampen the piano's upper strings); milk frothers on harp strings, etc."
The project's genesis was very much inspired by as well as performed at the mecca of brutalism – the Barbican Centre. Iannis Xenakis, a Greek composer and architect who would create buildings to fit his scores, and scores to fit his buildings was an inspiration, Actress and the LCO took architectural layouts of the Barbican and created sounds directly inspired by its shapes.