Gizeh Records || UK
LINKS: website | twitter | facebook
TERRITORY: UK + EU in association w/ Wingstop
AVAILABLE: Generally available 2017
Shield Patterns is the Manchester-based duo of Claire Brentnall and Richard Knox (A-Sun Amissa / The Rustle of the Stars / Glissando). Together they create intensely emotive music full of light and shade that's both melodic and incredibly detailed. It's a sound that is at once accessible and exploratory and ends up as a triumph of dreamily surreal contemporary music.
The duo's critically acclaimed debut LP Contour Lines (2014) and subsequent EP Violet (2015) were both released via Richard's own Gizeh label with new album Mirror Breathing released in September 2016.
THE SKINNY ★★★★★
"A stirring confessional, a thrilling musical evolution, and an inch away from perfect. If that."
"an intimate and touching album full of emotion"
THE SOUND NOT THE WORD
"Mirror Breathing – and, by extension, Shield Patterns – is something very, very special, and deserves to be both treasured, and recognised for the triumph that it is."
"It is an ash covered place of spectral memories and somber incantation. I don’t know if you need to be alive or dead to reach that place but I want to go. I’m seduced."
"A stunner. For a moment we had the first records of Sneaker Pimps in mind. So yes, it is a sort of trip hop, but because of the countless jazz, classical and experimental sounds, it's so much more than that"
"Mirror Breathing is a variable smorgasbord of texture and depth. Nods very firmly at Björk whilst still retaining Shield Patterns’ distinct voice"
Debut album Contour Lines featured in many 'album of the year' lists at the end of 2014 including:
The Skinny - Albums of the Year #27
The Silent Ballet - Tracks of the Year #7
The Music Fix - Best Albums of 2014
[SIC] Magazine - Editor’s Pick’s of 2014 #3
SeeSound - Albums of the Year #6
45 MAGAZINE (Live Review)
"Borrowing the dense, yet richly stratified compositions from masters of rippling electronic realms like Actress, Forest Swords and even (at times) Joy Orbison and marrying them to the effortlessly avant garde vocals that sounded like Kate Bush calling out to you from the unknown extents of of a whirling vortex, this duo delivered a set that was nothing short of jaw dropping."
HIT THE FLOOR 9/10
"Sexy, intricate, menacing, haunting, and quite frankly hypnotic – Shield Patterns have arguably released what could be the best electronic album of the year. Even more so, this is possibly one of the best debut albums that has been committed to record in a long, long time"
THE SKINNY ★★★★★
"Ten songs that carry enough charge to burn a hole in your heart. Contour Lines is immense."
"Dark, brooding, heartfelt minimalism"
SLATE THE DISCO
“Make no mistake; this work still fits within the confines of pop, broadly defined, but when it exceeds those boundaries it does so qualitatively rather than quantitatively. You’d be a fool to approach this without a good set of headphones.”
"a strong collection of artfully fashioned electronic songcraft"
NOW THEN MAGAZINE
“Brentnall’s voice glides breathily over pulsing electronic beats, reminiscent of a siren beckoning those who delve deeper into some haunted retreat”
“subtly infectious melodicism and sparse beatscapes”
THE LINE OF BEST FIT (UK)
“wracked with the kind of restive bestiality only found in Hieronymus Bosch triptychs”
GOD IS IN THE TV
“the kind of quietly epic song craft that puts many bands and musicians ploughing similar territories in the shade”
FRAGILE OR POSSIBLY EXTINCT
Artist of the week: “ Endlessly fascinating”.
WHISPERIN & HOLLERIN 9/10
"The production is epic, built on immense washes of sound. Claire Brentnall's vocals glide and soar, intimate but assured, and the songs drift, smoke-like."
“A lovely surprise. Recommended”