The Royal Arctic Institute - From Catnap to Coma to Catharsis LP
The Royal Arctic Institute - From Catnap to Coma to Catharsis LP (Already Dead/USA)
Limited edition of 300 and will keep your ears busy until Dromedary reissues the Das Damen debut EP with bonus tracks in October. Hoboken homies rejoice!
The Royal Arctic Institute, a five-piece instrumental ensemble based in NYC/NJ will be releasing a full-length album on 12” LP vinyl, 'Catnap to Coma to Catharsis'. The collection compiles the material from their 2022 mini album 'From Catnap To Coma' and it’s 2023 sequel, 'From Coma To Catharsis' along with a previously unreleased track, “New South Wales.” All these performances were recorded and produced by James McNew (Yo La Tengo) in the historic Neumann Leather Factory in Hoboken, New Jersey. 'Catnap to Coma to Catharsis' will be issued August 4 by Already Dead Records and Tapes.
At present, The Royal Arctic Institute comprises five musicians who have played extensively with other groups and/or as backing/session musicians: drummer Lyle Hysen (Das Damen, Arthur Lee, The Misguided), guitarists John Leon (Roky Erickson, Summer Wardrobe, Abra Moore) and Lynn Wright (And The Wiremen, Bee And Flower, Shilpa Ray), bassist David Motamed (Das Damen, Two Dollar Guitar, Arthur Lee, Townes Van Zandt), and keyboardist Carl Baggaley (Headbrain, Gramercy Arms).
All the pieces were created communally, deconstructing then reconstructing material mainly composed by guitarist John Leon with a couple written by other band members. McNew recorded the band in a live setting with no digital magic and minimal overdubs except for pedal steel work by John.
Tracks from the sessions for the first mini-album “First Of The Eight” and “Ghosts Of The Great Library” are powerfully marked by the distinctive playing of second guitarist Lynn Wright, while their musical take on a side-effect of COVID 19, “Anosmia Suite,” showcases David Motamed powerful bass work. The second mini-album highlighted the band's musical development after a further year of playing together. This includes songwriting contributions by Dave (“Angleman’s Lament”), and Lynn (“The Elated World”) as well as more input from Carl.
Leon and Hysen originally formed The Royal Arctic Institute in 2016 along with OG bassist Gerard Smith. This line-up recorded two albums before disbanding and subsequently reforming as a quintet in early 2020 at the outset of the SARS-COV-2 pandemic.
The From Coma To Catharsis sessions were, sadly, guitarist Lynn Wright’s last work with the band as a full member as he’s recently relocated to Berlin to further his career in music. The band will continue to play shows and record with Lynn when possible.