February 5, 2023
Credit score: Steve Gullick

Maps – aka James Chapman – has shared the most recent single from his quickest and most rhythmic album up to now, Counter Melodies, due out on Mute on 10 February 2023.

Final 12 months Chapman dropped the primary half of his new album and adopted up with an infectious remix of ‘Witchy Really feel’ from GLOK (Trip’s Andy Bell) – each bit unfolding to disclose his most euphoric album but. In the present day, Maps heralds the second half of the album with ‘Fever Dream’, one of many album’s most intensely layered tracks.

Hearken to ‘Fever Dream’- BELOW:

The observe was prompted by a bout of extreme insomnia. “I went by a interval of not with the ability to sleep,” remembers Chapman. “I’d simply be mendacity there awake for a lot of the night time and typically I’d stand up to work on music. That influenced numerous this album. With ‘Fever Dream’, I used to be making an attempt to make it sound like waves and waves of paranoia. I needed to seize that feeling of being half awake and half asleep and going inwards into your ideas. It’s nonetheless an uplifting observe, however I needed to isolate that concept of issues falling aside, whilst you attempt to organise the chaos of your ideas.”

From the opening chiming bell sounds of ‘Witchy Really feel’, Maps nods in direction of membership music – with a framing that has by no means been totally evident in his music to date. Beneath Counter Melodies’ grids of unwavering beats is a stressed unpredictability, filled with unplaceable sounds that arrive out of nowhere or which exist on the periphery of detectability. “I’ve at all times felt there are some components of dance music that I like,” explains Chapman, “however typically it feels purely purposeful. I’ve at all times needed to make music that has emotion and that makes folks really feel one thing. There are components of this album which have a clubby affect, however I like throwing in curveballs to make my music a bit extra fascinating.”

Preliminary concepts for Counter Melodies started to kind within the wake of Colors. Replicate. Time. Loss. Chapman selected to not tour the album past a number of exhibits, as a substitute, he discovered himself DJing lots in direction of the tip of 2019. “I used to be having fun with making my very own tracks and taking part in them in my DJ units,” he says. “It’s like a comic making an attempt out new materials. I actually appreciated the thought of tracks flowing into each other, like a steady DJ set. As quickly as that concept was in my head, I simply labored actually onerous to make it occur.”

Whereas Counter Melodies sounds completely distinctive within the Maps catalogue, there’s something about its presentation and tonality that makes it immediately recognisable as Maps. What Chapman has achieved with Counter Melodies is a brand new journey by the acquainted emotional terrain of the Maps sound, whereas additionally transporting you to extra resolutely optimistic and hopeful locations.

Counter Melodies

Counter Melodies album tracklisting
Witchy Really feel
Heya Yaha
Via Lights
Home windows Open
Lack Of Sleep
Fever Dream
My Love Is Like

Maps’ Counter Melodies is out on 10 February 2023 on vinyl (restricted version white vinyl comes with A4 signed and numbered artwork print), CD and digitally:

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