Rustin Man: A Dreamer
Rustin Man's Drift Code is in Hi-Res 24-Bit on Qobuz
Under his pseudonym Rustin Man, Paul Webb dazzled his audience in a duo with Beth Gibbons (the voice behind Portishead) on the album Out of Season (2002). Before that, the British artist had played bass guitar in Mark Hollis' cult group Talk Talk between 1981 and 1988. He later produced a few albums (The Year Of The Leopard by James Yorkston in 2006 and Hilfe Kommt by Dez Mona in 2009) but nevertheless remained rather discreet... At 57, Webb has finally decided to release his first real solo album. The record is well-matured and truly personal. It was recorded at his home where he lives with his wife and children - a converted barn in the middle of a field in Essex, 3 miles from the nearest village. The building has the feel of an old curiosity shop that has been transformed into a modern living space. The attic seems like it has escaped right out of Alice in Wonderland and it is there that Rustin Man recorded his delicate voice, one that’s reminiscent of Robert Wyatt. In fact, the former leader of Soft Machine often comes to mind on Drift Code, as the album mixes chamber pop, baroque folk, fairground blues and fake jazz. There’s also a touch of Bowie in his tracks, which are carried by a cabaret piano, a psychedelic guitar, a funeral organ or an eerie euphonium... It’s an intriguing and magnificent record that feels like a strange dream, full of twists and turns. A dream that we return to again and again, just to enjoy its timeless richness.
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