SIMPLE PAST (2016)
Sometimes, when you dream of recording an album, you end up with a recorded dream. Simple Past is that kind of dream. Since the beginning of the 1990s, Robert’s musical activity has been focused more or less on improvised contemporary electric chamber music and includes groups and projects like Fragile (with Arvo Urb), Weekend Guitar Trio (with Mart Soo and Tõnis Leemets), Three Corners of The World (with David Rothenberg and Petri Kuljuntausta), Quartet for The End of Time (with Weekend Guitar Trio and Markus Reuter), UMA (with Aleksei Saks, Iris Oja and Andi Pupato), Slow Electric (with Peter Chilvers and Tim Bowness feat. Tony Levin) and This Fragile Moment (with Toyah Wilcox, Markus Reuter, Chris Wong and Arvo Urb).
After Robert Jürjendal’s first two solo albums, Source of Joy (2013) and Balm of Light (2015), Simple Past puts more attention into the wider and rockier sound, produced mainly with U8 Deluxe Touch Guitar, an arsenal of effects, and drums played by the highly acclaimed Estonian drummer Andrus Lillepea.
Simple Past is a 10-track instrumental concept album based on the notion of temporality of the human world, conveying the realization that even when we work hard and try our best, our lives will sooner or later disappear into the endless emptiness.
The music of Simple Past, composed by Robert Jürjendal, is carried by certain nostalgic, candidly intimate feelings charged with fresh energy and leading into unforeseen turns. Robert’s personal composition style smoothly connects echoes from 1970s prog and fusion with contemporary ambient sounds and techniques.
Compared to Jürjendal’s previous albums, Simple Past puts less effort into loop-oriented music. Based mostly on the relations of guitar and drums, the album provides a wide range of sounds and includes passionate exchanges between players.
releases October 13, 2016
Robert Jürjendal — touch guitars (U8 Deluxe, Breedlove C15 Custom, Gretsch G3151), percussion, keyboards (1, 6, 8, 9), Neunaber effects
Andrus Lillepea — drums (1–8)
Lotte — „water drop” samples (6)
Six — breathing (9)
Music written and arranged by Robert Jürjendal
Drum arrangements by Andrus Lillepea
Produced by Robert Jürjendal
Recorded and mixed by Robert Jürjendal at Aaviku farmstead, April–August 2016
Drums recorded and mixed by Indrek Patte at Matrix Studio
Mastered by Indrek Patte at Matrix Studio in Tallinn
Design by Kati Katkosilt
Photo by Robert Jürjendal
Cover drawing by Anti Jürjendal
Balm of Light (2015)
Robert Jürjendal: U8 Deluxe, Breedlove C15 Custom, Gretsch G3151, Yamaha CPX-8-12 guitars, classical guitar; electronics, percussion, voice, baglama, ektara, field recordings
Signe Jürjendal: voice (4,5, 8)
Anti Jürjendal: cello (4, 7, 10,13)
Iti Jürjendal: harpsichord (2)Produced by Robert Jürjendal
Recorded and mixed by Robert Jürjendal at Aaviku Farmstead
Master by Indrek Patte at Matrix Stuudio
Glass Art and installation by Lotte Jürjendal
Photos by Tauno Pääslane
Design by Tarvo-Kaspar Toome
Source of Joy (2013)
This album is produced as one whole story divided into thirteen individual musical pictures. Assembling this work took almost three full years. Many ideas have been recorded at locations as diverse as hotel room, home, garden and even sauna. Some of these recordings were originally a simple loops which later were used as creative motors for an expanded writing /recording/production process. In the end, some of these loops, having done their job, were removed from the final pieces and are not heard at all.
The aesthetic position of the album lies somewhere between contemporary classical, ambient, rock and soundscape music. As in his previous works, Robert pays close attention to the beauty of melodic and harmonic structure in his compositions.
“Situations came up where I started to improvise, but later I chose a new arrangment with new instruments and sounds while holding on to the form of the improvisation, it is a total process, not a linear one.”
Arvo Urb, Estonian drummer and producer, a member of the legendary Estonian prog – rock band In Spe, Robert’s bandmate for a long time in Fragile also a member of the project This Fragile Moment (featuring Toyah Willcox, Markus Reuter, Chris Wong and Robert Jürjendal)
Madis Metsamart – percussionist in the Estonian State Symphonic Orchestra
Aleksei Saks – corno da caccia player, member of the duo UMA (with Robert Jürjendal)
Riho Sibul – well-known Estonian guitarist and songwriter, Robert’s duo-mate for many years
Anti Jürjendal – young cello player, Robert’s son.
Lotte Jürjendal – singer and artist, Robert’s daughter
Andi Pupato – percussionist and a sound artist, a co-member of UMA , longtime member of Nik Bärtsch’s Ronin
Geoff Leigh – flute player, a legendary improviser, a member of the group Ex-Wise Heads, member of Henry Cow
The album was recorded in Estonia at Martix Studio and Next Door Studio between Jan-Feb. 2012. Mixed by Arvo Urb and Robert Jürjendal between Sept 2012 – Jan 2013. Mastered by Andi Pupato in March 2013, Zürich, Switzerland