The Sensory Illusions

KK 110LP KK 110LP

LP version. Heavy cardboard, die-cut cover; Includes printed inner sleeves and download code; Edition of 500. Scottish composer and multi-instrumentalist Bill Wells returns with The Sensory Illusions, the eponymous debut album from his duo with virtuoso tuba player Danielle Price. Featuring Wells on electric guitar, the album has all the warmth, melancholy, and playfulness of his finest work, with timeless melodies that touch on jazz, pop, bossa nova, soundtracks, and folk. Wells has used the tuba in several of his projects. Bassist Lindsay Cooper doubled up on tuba in his Octet, while 2011's Lemondale (2011) features the renowned Japanese tuba player Sekijima Takero. In 2014, Wells was looking for tuba player to play on his second album with Aidan Moffat, The Most Important Place In The World. Price came recommended and subsequently joined their touring band. "A couple of weeks later I discovered that she and I were neighbors!" Wells adds. As a result, they would occasionally get together to practice standards. The Sensory Illusions emerged after Wells secured a Glasgow support slot with Anna Meredith in April 2016. Wells notes that these tunes came to him in dreams, as did the band name. He states: "In some ways it's a continuation of the more jazz-based line-ups such as the trio and the octet," says Wells, "but for me the focus is as much on the guitar playing as the writing. I'm interested in playing over standard type (chord) sequences but hopefully not sounding too much like a 'jazz guitarist'." Wells has nothing but praise for his musical partner. "Danielle is one of the best musicians I've ever worked with. She's extremely versatile, from playing in trad jazz bands or with the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, to playing with the likes of Ashley Paul, Mats Gustafson, and Ntshuks Bonga. She functions as both bass player and drummer in the Sensory Illusions, combing percussive sounds with melodic patterns/riffs." That rhythmic quality can be heard on tracks such as "Tango", which she underpins with strutting riff, and "Theme From Flint", where she transforms Jerry Goldsmith's lounge-jazz groove into a cantering brass figure. Yet the tuba is also the vehicle for some of Wells's loveliest melodies, from the wistful "Brass Alley Dream" to closing track "An August Ballad".