FLDPLN – ESCALATOR
A SPILL EXCLUSIVE ALBUM PREMIERE
We are all for a smooth dreamy trip of the ilk produced by the likes of Tycho, Slowdive, M83 and Bonobo. Glad to say that, as of today, we can add to this fine list of dream-gaze producers with the advent of the new album from saxophone-loving Arizona-based electro-chill artist FLDPLN (pronounced “field-plan”). This is the solo moniker of chameleonic multi-instrumentalist Andrew Saks, perhaps best known as frontman of Southern California shoegaze band Sway.
Like many artists following the break-up of their band, Saks went through somewhat of a metamorphosis after their split, choosing to put down the guitar a bit in favour of the saxophone, having first fell in love with the instrument upon beginning lessons at the age of 12. Here, FLDPLN presents stellar electronica that is laced by reverie-inspiring textures that beautifully combine. Fluid, relaxing and daydream-provoking, Andrew Saks foray into the world of electronica is a most welcome one.
Deeply influenced by 80s pop, he brings in shoegaze-like textures and an ambient aesthetic, created by layered saxophones and synths. This Friday, FLDPLN will finally release this long-layer, both digitally and on color vinyl via the label Sillas Famosas.
“Escalator” was written, produced, recorded and mixed by Andrew Saks at his home studio in Phoenix, Arizona. This follows up his 2018 album Let You Down and his 2021 single “Cashout”, release in 2021.
“’Escalator’ is really the result of my years of dabbling in electronic music production combined with my desire to reconnect with my roots, having been a saxophone player for most of my life,” says Andrew Saks.
“For this album, I wanted to write songs that are true to the way I hear things in my head, dreamy, blurry, beautiful without compromise and incorporate the horn as a textural instrument as well as another melodic voice.”
The idea behind FLDPLN was to incorporate Saks’ love for electronic music production and early 90’s post-punk sensibilities, while allowing saxophones and synthesizers to be used to fill-in texturally, where guitars have typically been the fundamental building element of the “shoegaze” and “dream pop” sub-genres. Saxophone textures are layered, at times co-mingling with synthesizers to create a soft, warm bed of sound, the perfect backdrop for the whisper-like vocals reminiscent of Andrew’s hushed voice with Sway.
At times, Andrew’s horn playing features soaring leads that lift the dreamlike and serene to near-anthemic heights while, in other instances, they convey an emotional, whisper-like voice. While certainly nowhere near new to experimental music, the tone and texture of the saxophone in this context effectively lends itself to ethereal lullabies and reflective daydreams.
While textures and sound are an integral component of the music, Andrew does not shy away from hook-laden songwriting. This music is highly influenced by childhood memories of going to bed each night, falling asleep with Walkman headphones on and later waking up in the darkness, in a partial dream-state with the pop songs of the 1980’s – Pet Shop Boys, New Order, Bruce Springsteen, Lisa Lisa and Cult Jam, Debbie Gibson, Human League still whispering in his ears.
The “Aliso” and “Escalator” singles are now available via online stores, such as Apple Music, and streaming platforms like Spotify. The full Escalator LP will released on July 30 and can be pre-ordered digitally and on color vinyl via Bandcamp.
Enjoy the video for the title track “Escalator” and single “Aliso”, plus the audio-visual experience presented in this album teaser:
Release Date: July 30, 2021