The Weapons Factory | Millions

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UK - England - West Midlands

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Electronic: Ambient Jazz: Crossover Jazz Moods: Mood: Intellectual
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Millions

by The Weapons Factory

An ambient journey through a soundscape of the mind. Taking in many apsects of modern music from ambient electronca to drum and bass and cool jazz
Genre: Electronic: Ambient
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
1. Love Don't Live Here
4:18 $0.99
clip
2. Forsaken
6:44 $0.99
3. Desert Dolphins
7:57 $1.50
clip
4. New Age Suite
10:11 $1.99
5. Millions
4:33 $0.99
clip
6. Worst Nightmare, Perfect Fantasy
6:31 $0.99
7. Southern Sunset
4:51 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.

ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
The Weapons Factory stems from the brainchild of Nick Welch, and the result of a year of intense work creating a solid bed of Electro Ambient D+B mixes as a 15 year old Computer Game and DJ mix fanatic. The mixes were created as one of Nick’s bedroom studio hobbies, with the intent to produce just a limited edition for friends and to sell to a few local boutiques and specialised gift stores to cover costs. An opportunity to move to California near silicon valley and the world of computer game development put a hold on any further energies being directed to the music projects., so the CD’s and mixes ended up among his Dad's CD archives. Some years later, his father, a musician and producer, revisited the old mixes, and enthused by the sounds and possibilities, brought them to IMMG's studio to explore development and re-mastering. Experimental melodic layers were added, and so began a years work of additional vocals and instrumentation. As the layers and contributing artists grew, so did the excitement around the results. By the time the fourth track was finished, it was obvious that something exciting and releasable was in creation. By the end of the year, the debut ‘Weapons Factory’ album 'Millions' was complete, and a further selection of tracks laid down for the follow up of WF2.

REVIEW:
Artist: The Weapons Factory
Album: Millions
Review by Matthew Forss

The electronic wizardry of ambient drum ‘n’ bass composer and DJ fanatic, Nick Welch, is refreshingly hip and cool with all the fixings for a delicious dance session. The music is largely composed of jazzy, ambient-centered tracks with some dub, trance, and new age elements, too. Nick is joined by sax player, arranger, and vocalist Robin Welch, along with producer, guitarist, and songwriter John Perkins. The performance repertoire is diverse with many musical layers of sound that reach far into the outer reaches of space and time.

“Love Don’t Live Here” begins with a light percussive sound of drum set swooshes, synth washes, and a single exhaling human voice before the music moves into a scattered break-beat pattern with the addition of a few sax notes. The beat speeds up as a female voice sings a few melismatic vocals, as another voice provides spoken word accompaniment. The break-beat, drum ‘n’ bass sound is definitely indicative of the music from other groups, including Lamb, Maxinquaye, or Massive Attack. The fast beat sound cuts in and out with room for the spoken word accompaniment, intermittent sax, and vocal melisma. The cascading sounds of the bass-like melody, dub sounds, synth washes, and selected vocals provide a good listening experience with room to dance, daydream, or drift away to a far-off land.

“Forsaken” is a song with a gritty opening of equally-measured sounds that slowly speed up into a dance-laden concoction of mixed, male scat vocals. The song takes on an Eastern flair with a bit of bluesy/Western guitar work that would be a perfect addition to HBO’s True Blood soundtrack. The haunting vocals are reminiscent of a monastic choir at times, with the guitar work bordering on anything by Chris Isaak, and the dance beats of any trance group. Despite the multi-faceted depiction, the music seems to work together without reverting to anything melancholic. “Desert Dolphins” opens with a few electronic sounds, light percussive swooshes, and a sax intro before the dub ‘n’ bass leads the song into various directions of electronic blurbs, watery gurgles, and ambient soundscapes. The melodies merge into a heavy, dance track with electronic blurbs, sax accompaniment, and ambient washes. Though, the sax seems to be a pervasive theme throughout the song, and album, it may not be particularly necessary for a majority of the songs. This is mostly due to the electronic, ambient, dance track structure that does not necessarily need sax accompaniment. However, the sax does provide a dub ‘n’ bass, drum ‘n’ bass, and jazzy-trance ambiance that smoothes or cools the fiery dance tracks.

“New Age Suite” opens with singing birds, water sounds, and synth washes, before a break-beat rhythm dives right into a heavy, dance medley with occasional ambient washes. The sax appears throughout, as muffled and staticky voices break-up the instrumental continuity. Different and clearer scat vocals are repeated a bit near the middle of the song. The electronic blurbs, ambient washes, dance beat, haunting, but indeterminate voices, and the jazzy elements seems to be something that would emanate from a ‘New Age’ suite. “Millions” begins with an earthy, ambient intro, light sax solo, and a frenzied break-beat rhythm. The slower, jazz elements and fast break-beat rhythm are complete opposites, but work well due to their instrumental polarization. The sax and ambient washes break-up the fast pace, though the rhythm slows half-way through the song, as a mix of radio or television interference and electronic voices take over.
Nick Welch is a talented and diverse musician with a clear vision for his music. The incorporation of jazzy elements and electronic music seemed to be divergent, though the musical relationships to jazz and dance music are closer than other forms of music. Millions is an album with danceable tracks and some of the lighter, ambient fare. The scat vocals and mostly unintelligible vocals added a level of mystery to the music. At times, the sax did not seem to be a necessary addition to the songs, but it was not used too pervasively to warrant any major qualms. All in all, the album featured seven songs running around forty-five minutes. The musical arsenal of The Weapons Factory is an exciting contribution to the world of break-beat, trance, dub ‘n’ bass, and drum ‘n’ bass.

Review by Matthew Forss
Rating: 4 stars (out of 5)

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