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Isolated Pieces

by Assemblage

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    All proceeds from this project are going to support the much-needed work of Youth Music
    This organisation - like all the contributors to this album - believes that every young person should have the chance to change their life through music.
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Dislodged 03:44
Likety Spit 01:19
Look Back 04:20
Throb 04:07
Crows 02:18
Reverend 04:31
Twister 03:31
Murmurations 03:38


This is an album with a difference.

Composer-curator Colin Riley has assembled an 'online orchestra' of 27 musicians who have all worked in isolation without knowing about each other. The ensemble is called Assemblage. Pieces of musical lego have then been put together over the last 18 months following where the music has led. A fusion of musical styles and creative approaches.

Working be means of response, this project has been propagated from 17 small musical seeds; short haiku-like improvisations made on the piano by Colin Riley and Liam Noble.

Colin has invited musicians who he knew trusted him, to record sympathetic responses to any of these fragments. As he collected these back, his own musical responses were set in motion. Fragments were laid together, displaced, cut up and sometimes looped or electronically treated. Sometimes the original piano haikus were erased altogether. He followed where the material led him, allowing for an integrated language fully-exposed to musical genre of any kind. As individual pieces took shape further invitations to respond were made drawing in a range of vocalists. This next layer involved text and so helped to focus many of the emerging moods of the music.

The backwards-and-forwards game of garnering further responses was played for over a year. The result is 18 tracks charting the emotions of disconnectedness and isolation during the pandemic lockdowns. By turns the music is intimate, bleak, sensuous, angry, witty, and ecstatic: but always sensitive and full of detail.

The contributors come from many diverse musical backgrounds and ages. This community of musicians acting as a ‘virtual orchestra’ is at the heart of the project. The process has been to engage in new creative territory, and along the way to explore fresh ideas around what music is about at its core - connectedness.


released April 1, 2022

Savannah Roberts (voice)
Elisabeth Nygård (voice)
Melanie Pappenheim (voice)
Jeremy Avis (voice)
Ben See (voice)
Benjamin Zephaniah (voice)
Daljit Nagra (voice)
Georgia Cooke (flute)
Andy Hall (trumpet)
Mandhira de Saram (violin)
Nic Pendlebury (viola)
Natalie Rozario (cello)
Steve Hackett (electric guitar)
Rich Perks (electric guitar)
Ruth Goller (bass)
Genevieve Wilkins (bowed vibes)
Dave Smith (drums)
Roger King (synth)
Colin Riley (piano-organ-cello)
Liam Noble (piano)
Stephen Hiscock (percussion)
Dave Smith (drums)
Spenser Buckley (electronic loops and textures)
Jeevan Rai (electronic loops and textures)
James Waterworth (electronic textures)
Ben Jarlett (electronic texture)

Lyrics by Benjamin Zephaniah, Colin Riley, Elisabeth Nygård and Ben See.


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Squeaky Kate Music London, UK

Squeaky Kate Music was set up in 2006 to record and promote the music of composer Colin Riley and associated groups.

For more information about Colin Riley visit: www.colinriley.co.uk

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