“My songs are a reflection of the world as i see it, and the world as I see it is often dark but not hell. I’m filled with hope sometimes I think but mostly it’s dark with the odd shaft of light.”- Gavin Clark
Ludovico Einaudi’s new album ‘Elements’ is packed full of the kind of emotive, introspective music you’ve come to expect of the Italian composer – but this album delivers on so many more levels than this with references to writing of the Russian artist Kandinsky, meditations on use of musical colour and (obviously) the periodic table of elements. Once heard, it’s something difficult to forget.
One piece that holds a special place for us is the last track on the album ‘Song For Gavin’, a beautiful, wandering, melancholic piece that Ludovico wrote for his collaborator and friend, Gavin Clark who sadly passed away early in 2015.
Clark regularly worked alongside critically acclaimed film-maker Shane Meadows – in fact providing scores for all but one of his films. This is where Ludovico met Gavin, through Meadow’s film ‘This Is England’ for which Clark provided a wonderful cover of The Smiths ‘Please Please Please Let Me Get What I Want’ as the credits roll which you can listen to below.
‘Song For Gavin’ is one of those songs that once you hear it, it sticks with you. It’s compulsive listening.
It all at once conveys his appreciation of his talents along with a profound sense of loss – it’s prolonged silence at the beginning acting as a mark of respect and signifying the gap left by someone who once occupied a space no longer being there. The emotion is raw but handled deftly – the repeated ascending motifs giving a feeling of gratitude, hope and a drifting sadness.
It’s captiviating to watch the composer play it live. Essential viewing.
Find the ‘Elements’ sheet music book here.
Watch Shane Meadow’s short film on Gavin below for Noisey.