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When not ripping it up with Atlas Chasers, local Perth Musician, Tom Purdy, creates expansive, cinematic guitar-heavy instrumentals that are reminiscent of 80s guitar heroes such as Steve Vai. One of the classic aspects about rock instrumentals is their ability to take someone on a journey, and this one ticks all the boxes. 

Self recorded and produced, Castle Wellan proves Purdy to be an exceptionally talented instrumentalist – born from a love of soundscapes, emotive progressions and guitar solos. Purdy’s debut release IDIR contrasts ambient emotive chords with Distorted riffs and soaring solos and sits nicely alongside this tribute..

Castle Wellan is dedicated to his late grandfather, William Thomas Purdy, who passed away from cancer last year, and underlying this track is a palpable sense of loss. Starting with a contemplative opening, the piece then kicks into gear as dual guitars soar over melodic waves of emotion, and it is easy to imagine yourself as a bird, flying over the oceans back home. A beautiful track.  

Some Words from Ash Lee…….

Someone once told me that grief is like an ocean…not just the one ocean though, no, it’s all of the earths oceans  – connected to create a huge body of water in a very large, unlimited space or quantity. There are borders..places that intersect and provide us with the ability to assign definitions but that which are, in reality, not visible to the eye.

These intersections, where the currents continually swell and mix; they encircle the earth, turn back on themselves, they create turbulence, rips and waves that crash – that crash and crash..and crash. I do not imagine that these spaces would be easy for one to traverse and I must say also that through the passages of time; these spaces, they are not stagnant but rather they shift within each moment.

Upon viewing, the path traversed by you will likely appear entirely different when seen by another and so these passages that are sailed and the borders that are crossed…they should be faced head on, with courage, you must dive into the waves and allow yourself to feel the depths of their thrust for if you fight against them you will become lost – the waves will dump you over and over again, they will become harder to breach as you search for the surface and just like grief; these waves – the ocean – they do not discriminate. It does not matter the origin nor the colour of ones flesh; grief is innate within us all, it too is turbulent with subjective phases that are felt in each moment, through the passages of time. Grief must be acknowledged, faced head on – dive into its waves and allow yourself to feel its depths – it will not be easy and may not dissipate however you will grow with it and learn to sit with comfortably.

Having recently lost several people close to my heart; listening to Purdy’s Castle Wellan transported me to an emotionally reflective space. It caused me to look towards the sky, to wonder upon the stars, and to recall this parable told to me about the ocean. With each note, I felt as though through a journey I had traversed. There is a particular moment too, that is memorable in my mind; a single chord played off key…a discordance that one would usually omit however for me, it is perfectly symbolic of those fractured moments felt when sitting with grief. It belongs there. Listen for 2.06.

Tom Mantle from Big Tommo Presents Tom Mantle from Big Tommo Presents



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