Austrian Handpan Player Manu Delago Takes Listener Through Sleep Cycle on New Album

'Circadian' LP lands September 13 via One Little Indian Records.
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Manu Delago will release his new album, Circadian, this September.

The album, set for release via One Little Indian Records, takes the listener through the cycle of sleep stages, emulating REM, light sleep, deep sleep, and an abrupt awakening. It begins in the late afternoon, moving into sunset and night time, and through to the morning. 

Delago was inspired by the concept after touring with Björk, Ólafur Arnalds, The Cinematic Orchestra, and Anoushka Shankar.

“Before I made this album, I had a phase of very intense touring with multiple trips to five different continents, without a break for several months,“ Delago says.  “It literally felt like touring with four bands simultaneously, and in my dreams the music and crews started to commingle. I found it interesting how my brain was trying to digest all these experiences during sleep hours. In fact, during REM sleep the brain is very creative. In that stressful touring period, I started to consciously appreciate sleep and how much it contributes to mastering any challenge.”

Sonically, it see the Austrian musician depart from his electronic-leaning work by incorporating percussive instruments found on those worldwide tours—from places such as Vietnam, Russia, Turkey, and Indonesia—aiming to create an electronic-inspired album in an acoustic form. 

“I wanted to incorporate elements of the electronic music that influences me; I used clarinets and accordion like warm analog synthesizers, and added strings and trombone to give it an orchestral but yet very intimate character,“ Delago explains.

Last year, Delago released Parasol Peak, an awe-inspiring short film and album project, also on One Little Indian. 

Tracklistings

01. Circadian

02. The Silent Flight of the Owl

03. Uranus

04. The Moment I’m Still Awake

05. Delta Sleep (Live at 4:33am)

06. Draem

07. Zeitgeber

08. Delta Sleep (prototype)

Circadian LP lands September 13, with more information coming soon. Meanwhile, you can stream "The Silent Flight Of The Owl" below. 

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