Divine Comedy ambient side hustle
Monochrome Echo is the recording alias of Divine Comedy bassist and in-demand session musician Simon Little. He’s been crafting enchanting synthscapes on the side since 2016, conjuring off-world sci-fi mysteries that stand in sharp contrast to his day job, which also sees him working with the likes of Nick Cave and Ben Folds. “I wanted a clean slate with no reference to either my previous solo albums or my work as a session bassist,” Little explains, adding that he’s been into electronic music since his late teens. “Much later on, I got into the more beat-forward work of artists like Teebs, Shigeto and Com Truise, who’ve all been an influence.”
Why Monochrome Echo?
There’s a drifting melancholia about Little’s work that will have enormous appeal to Boards Of Canada, Aphex Twin or Vangelis devotees. He records in a well-stocked home studio that boasts some particularly high-quality Elektron gear. “The Digitone in particular lends itself really well to ambient sounds,” he tells us, “and so I took the decision to pair it up with my Analog Four and fully focus on making an entirely ambient album.”
Tell us more…
His most recent recordings, ‘The Forgetting’ and ‘Timelapse’ EPs form his most distinctive work yet, perfectly capturing his free-flying utopian visions of the distant future. ‘Siren Song’ for example, has a blissful warmth that feels supremely comforting. Which is no accident, as Little explains: “Since our son Ira was born I’ve been playing him ambient sounds from the likes of Steve Hauschildt, R Beny and Polypores, which have such a calming effect the end of the day. They inspired me to write a collection of original tracks that aimed for a similar sense of peacefulness.” And trust us folks, he’s nailed it.
‘The Forgetting’ and ‘Timelapse’ are both out now on Bandcamp