Islets of Langerhans
In a world that encourages the stilted and formal to be take on the mantle of leadership, it is the courage of the experimental to whom we should hail as directors, the spearheads in a campaign against the beige and obscenely dull.
There is a difference between searching for the novel form in which to instigate intrigue and attraction and that of the drastic manoeuvre in which the brash display their thoughts via the medium of promotion of self-illusion, of boasting through the art of conceit; one is an honest adventure, the other arguably a titillation for the audience of bluster and vanity.
To the players who make up Rookery Ensemble, the former is very much the reveal of truth, there is no emptiness to be found, just a sense of purity, a utility of arrangement and word that is valued and fiercely driven. To that Rookery Ensemble must be given credence for being drawn towards the unique and stylish, and leaving the vanity driven exercises to others.
The new recording, Islets of Langerhans, is one steeped in an overall sadness that frames the narrative with beauty and honour, for in the loss of Alison O’ Melia in 2020, the uniqueness of expression carried by the group is given that sense of purpose of being more than just providing a new thought for the listener, it encourages them to hold dear all that is around them.
Across vocalised musings and songs such as In The Tic Toc, Hyper Reality Star -Radio Visionaries, Choral Interlude In D, The Conversation, and the album title track, Islets Of Langerhans, Rookery Ensemble’s George E Harris, David Rothon, the much missed Alison O’ Melia, along with members who found their way to the islands of imagination, Erik Moore, Mark Hill, Mitzy Valentine, Victoria Potterton, and Agata Liswoska, what comes through is an energy of expression, of insight into a world beyond our naked eye.
Never give in to the beige, for that way lays stagnation, explore far beyond what you think is the safe haven in the storm, for only when we find the islands, the islets and atolls are we assured of finding the unexplored depths to which we can find a different kind of pleasure that awaits. Such is the gift of Rookery Ensemble’s Islets of Langerhans; a native’s welcome is pledged.