Clark Readies New Album 'Playground in a Lake'

It features cellist Oliver Coates and Grizzly Bear's Chris Taylor

BY Calum SlingerlandPublished Jan 26, 2021

Clark has returned with details of a new album. The producer will share Playground in a Lake on March 26 via Deutsche Grammophon.

The 16-track Playground in a Lake follows Clark's 2019 full-length Kiri Variations and features cellist Oliver Coates and clarinet from Grizzly Bear's Chris Taylor.

New song "Small" arrives alongside the announcement, and you can hear it below.

Of his latest, Clark offered, "I've always wanted to record strings, but feel there's this baggage with classical music. Even though I've taught myself how to read and write sheet music, I'm not putting that genre, or any other genre on a silver platter.

"I'm not from an institutionalized contingent who deem a narrow range of instruments 'the real stuff' and everything else worthless commercial pop. I take what I admire from that world and then move on. I'm just using it as another colour." 

He continued: "So, I started thinking about my favourite kind of string arrangements, like Scott Walker records, where they exist amongst contrasting elements. Then I started to approach the album from a dark folk place, also with this heavy '70s synth style. Then came the improvisation of musique concrète, and some of my favourite modern classical and sound design obsessions, and then it clicked."

Of the effort's title, Clark explained that it's "broadly a story about real climate change, but told in mythological terms. It's about the last human on earth, the betrayal of an innocent child and becoming a grown-up; growing a shell over our lost young selves. It's the playground we bury and a drowned planet; an extinction myth.

"It can be many things: the nuclear fallout covered by a toxic flood, a buried utopia, or buried memories. Buried creative tools and writers block - you have to dive deep to get to the good stuff. The lake is still and serene — so beautiful you want to swim across it and yes, it's calm on one level, but sinister on another. There's a seductive numbness to it. A deathly placid chill." 

Playground in a Lake:

1. Lovelock
2. Lambent Rag
3. Citrus
4. Forever Chemicals
5. More Islands
6. Small
7. Disguised Foundation
8. Suspension Reservoir
9. Entropy Polychord
10. Aura Nera
11. Already Ghosts
12. Earth Systems
13. Emissary 
14. Comfort and Fear
15. Shut You Down
16. Life Outro

Pre-order Playground in a Lake.

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