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Cultural Bulletin discusses Experimental Music, Independent Cinema and the wider cultural themes that surround them.

In Review: Finding Shore - Brian Eno and Tom Rogerson

Three Trapped Tigers frontman Tom Rogerson pairs with the great Brian Eno, delving into the depths of the subconscious, drawing on the landscape of the east of England.

In the 1700s, smugglers used windmill sails along the East Anglian coast as semaphores to ensure safe passage for their trade. When listening to Finiding Shore one can easily fall into the thought of Rogerson and Eno sending cryptic messages of optimism from a place drenched in British history that dates back to the Neolithic age, spanning to the foreboding uncertainty of today.

Tom Rogerson, known for his extemporaneous piano playing, opens his debut with ‘Idea of Order at Kyson Point’. It seems fitting, as this is where he and Eno both hail from. The track starts with a hypnotic bell that rings in nostalgia from Eno’s ambient series, however when Rogerson starts to play the piano, the pairs intuitive ability to find complex loops and patterns in the simplicity of their structure comes to light.

Unsurprisingly there is the occasional dissonant note that moves forward the idea of meditation and order to bring reality in through the window.

Using the Moog Piano Bar, Eno is put into the back seat, improvising with the midi signals generated by Rogerson when he breaks the infrared rays fired at the piano keys. ‘Motion in Field’, ‘Marsh Chorus’ and ‘Chain Home’ experiment with the synth to create a vibrant picture of the journey through land and sea. These tracks give a thirst for more but instead, we are given a reverberation of sound that gives the album a perfect composure.  

‘Eastern Stack’, an almost exact replication of the striking of John Cage’s prepared piano, is anxious yet ethereal giving us a true vision of the landscape, the beauty screaming of its past importance and the turbulence of today.  The record is very suited to improvisation and calls for our own interpretation, however, the selected loops and compositions do have an air of the subconscious, memories from someone who has lived in the very landscape and experienced the sounds and concepts that are dotted throughout.

Having met in a toilet after a gig they both attended, Rogerson and Eno successfully combine their talents to create an accomplished debut and give the listener a longing for their next project. Be it together or alone, the duo has certainly used their expertise to create a blueprint that ought and deserves to have an encore. BS