It's not system music, but it does get played in clubs. It shares a background in classical music, but it's about as far from the chamber approach as you could dare to get. So where exactly does London-based producer Prayer fit in?
“It's like a depth of sound you can get lost, in which becomes a personal experience,” he explains. “It could be played in a club, really, but it's not really banging club music that you share with lots of people. I guess it's more of a personal experience.”
The reclusive producer has been on our radar for over 12 months now, with the new 'Beneath' EP finding Prayer operating alongside his Grade 10 cohorts. It's an intriguing release – at times sparse, fragmentary, at others lush and expansive, it's a pervasive whispering in your ear.
Classically trained, Prayer has always been drawn to the minimal end – however that is defined – of the spectrum. “With Minimalism in general, I think it's the textures I'm interested in, really,” he says. “So you can build minimal parts into big blocks of sound. It's quite intense. I was always interested in layering and different patterns and stuff, rather than melody as a whole and I think that's the sort of main element of minimalism I was drawn to, really.”
Working almost continually in his bedroom studio, Prayer is able to absorb himself with a MIDI keyboard and a pair of headphones. His music is truly, to coin an over-used phrase, a headphone listen. “I guess you can hear stuff more intensely, and maybe that comes through in how I write music,” he says. “If you listen to my stuff you can tell it's more about the musical element rather than the production element so I never try and go that in depth with over the top production, it's more coming from that classical background that lies behind my music.”
Working with tiny blocks of sound, Prayer is able to layer these, to construct pieces that suggest enormous depth without straying into bombast. “I guess my structures are maybe slightly more traditionally song-based,” he muses at one point in our conversation. “I do like to experiment a bit more but I guess it takes patches of what interests me and I create more freedom within that structure.”
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'Beneath' is out now.