Christopher Duncan, who performs as C Duncan, is a Scottish composer and a multi-instrumentalist whose classical music upbringing seeps into his sophisticated, billowy indie pop creations. Raised in Glasgow by two classical musicians, Duncan studied piano and viola before taking up guitar, bass and drums in his teens, eventually studying music composition at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland.
Set for release via FatCat Records on March 29th, C Duncan’s highly anticipated third album sees the Scottish multi-instrumentalist ditch his bedroom studio and work with other producers, engineers and musicians for the first time. “This was the biggest shift in dynamic for me,” he explains, “having always worked alone, it was a daunting prospect but one I knew I had to explore.” Navigating themes of love, anxiety and sexuality, ‘Health’ – produced by Elbow’s Craig Potter – is a deeply personal record that delves into a world Duncan had previously felt uneasy exploring. “Writing it was a very cathartic process. It helped me through a lot of tough times and also to celebrate the good,” he continues. Warm and harmonically rich, Duncan delightfully juxtaposes the vibrant and wholesome aesthetic of the album with an often-darker lyrical undertone, pushing himself to refine and explore new ways of writing. As the sole protagonist of his self-carved niche, ‘Health’ sees Duncan evolve and expand its parameters in mesmerising fashion.
Following the Mercury nominated debut ‘Architect’ (2015,) an it’s impressive follow up ‘The Midnight Sun’ (2016,) ‘Health’s’ soaring tapestries achieve what Duncan set out to.“With album 3 I wanted to take a more direct approach, adding even more layers but thematically and lyrically laid bare. Having someone else to bounce production ideas off was really eye-opening for me. In the past I had been very controlling about how everything would sound but ‘Health’ really showed me the benefit of working with others and made the whole process much less isolating,” he explains. Packed with fresh ideas and buzzing with invention, ‘Health’ combines syncopated art-pop piano rhythms with breezy, undulating heartbreak ballads executed with acute precision. As always Duncan has contributed all the artwork surrounding the release, and the colourful and natural aesthetic is reflected in the instrumentation and lyrics.
With support from Before Breakfast
Sheffield alternative pop quartet Before Breakfast release debut EP ‘Open Ears’ in April 2019.
Gina, Debra, Annie and Lucy weave strong melodies with piano, cello and vocal harmonies to create an authentic and accomplished sound that is drawn from a wealth of musical experience, from classical to folk, and are inspired by artists including Bjork and Marika Hackman. Before Breakfast have a strong sense of meaning, telling intimate stories about being a woman that resonate with people of all stages of life.
The band recently supported Tokio Myers at Shepherd’s Bush Empire, The Sage and Albert Hall, Manchester on his UK tour and have worked with Reverend And The Makers, Jon Boden, The Dunwells and Renegade Brass Band.