Jon Brooks Shapwick

Clay Pipe
19th June 2021

Stephen's Pick

View All Staff Picks

Format Info


When Jon Brooks’ Shapwick originally came out in 2012, it was a defining record for for both artist and label, Clay Pipe, marking out a position somewhat removed from Ghost Box’s more claustrophobic world. Jon was and is part of both, their Advisory Circle group Ghost Box mainstays. The Clay Pipe recordings feel slightly more organic, often piano led. Clues come from Frances Castle’s stylish illustrated covers and Shapwick is quite a spooky one. If one of the labels touchstones is forever Virginia Astley, then Shapwick may well be its From Gardens From Where We Don’t Feel Very Secure. A night-time record about a little Devon village which has an almost eerie calm about it, it’s quietly magnificent.

‘Share his mysterious vision via snatches of half-familiar incidental music, swathed in memorial reverb, and found sounds such as the echo-location clicks of bats, all recorded on deliciously deteriorating used cassette tapes;
– Stewart Lee. The Sunday Times.

‘And then Brooks brings out the real treasure: his most focused musical compositions yet; think his Advisory Circle LPs cleaned of public information films but beefed up with extra melody.’
-George Bass. Drowned in Sound.