The tides are turning for Mike Shannon and Takeshi Nishimoto, back with their second collaborative effort as Blue Fields. A project that debuted under Shannon’s own Haunt Music in 2012 with Ghost Story, their second album, Swimming in the Shadows is a deeper, more experimental piece that focuses on change, memory, and movement.
Completed over the course of four years, Swimming in the Shadows was written and recorded in Berlin, with Shannon behind production and sound design, and Nishimoto on guitar. Influenced by the turning of leaves and life’s inevitable transformations, Swimming in the Shadows swelters with feelings of deep unrest and sounds heavy with emotion.
Opening numbers “Paper Cuts” and “Falling in Deep” set the pace with dreamy, looping melodies and Parisian singer Ilhem Khodja’s hazy vocals. The momentum builds with darker, driving grooves and mutating synths — Cobblestone Jazz’s Danuel Tate, on the Rhodes, Vocoder and Moog Bass, features on the album’s stand out “I Felt That It Was True.” The album moves into more melancholy territory with “The Breeze Through The Floor” and the closing piece “Paper Ghost” as moments of distortion and deranged off-key tones melt back into the duo’s familiar pretty, underwater-like sounds.