Friday, 8 July 2016

Artist Profile: 3rd Heaven Project (Electro / Dance)


Source: 3rd Heaven Project (MySpace)

Music has always been an integral part of his life. Early influence such as psychedelic, punk and electronic/ambient music have been the driving force being what he describes now as "abstract ambient electronica". He describes his work as merely "a hobby" but nowadays make his musics and random, stark poetry accessible to many more people. His first attempt in making music was in 1979 with bass player James Davies, they formed a one off project called "concrete towers and recorded a track of the same name using a bass, taped electronic sounds and beleive it or not...a metal detector! In mid 1980, using only a moog prodigy, he recorded (in mono) "The feeling of water" e.p. which was never released formally. "A strange bit of music that! I had to do over layer upon over layer of tracks, to be honest, a bit of a mess". In 1986-87 he collaborated with close friend Steve Price to create another unreleased e.p. "High Tech Nightmare"; "Using samplers for the first time was fun; a few very dark tracks done and the tape was lost, so I cannot even remember the melody" 1989 saw Woody move into solo work. Under the guise "The Human Host" Two tape albums were generated "Inspired" in 1989 and "new life" in 1990, both recorded live and in mono on cassette tape. "Despite some very nice melodies, it sounded so amateur, I have the tapes somewhere... maybe I will have to re-do them in the future" For years there was silence.

Working as a drummer and assistant pastor in a local church, this demanded a great deal of his time; however the disbanding of this church in 1994 began what was as Woods describes "the dark years. "Issues in the family were causing great distress to my wife and myself and but for the grace of God, we would never of made it." During that time in 1997, Woody began to access the world of computer based music. Using midi software, virtual synthesizers, drum machines, samples and loops, the 3rd heaven Project was birthed. In two years there was enough material for three albums to be done "3rd Heaven", "The Timeless Elect" and "Levels of Sleep". Now in stereo but still on cassette format, something Woods was finding increasingly frustrating. These instrumental albums he hopes will one day be mastered onto C.D. In 2002, the first "real" album was released, however a very limited edition (only 10 copies). The "When God calls Time" album was the first stage of moving away from instrumentals and moving into poetic statements that became grafted into the music.

Although mainly dance based project, it began to become clear that a sound was beginning to form. A number of people who heard samples of the 2003 album were baffled by the fact that he had never formally released it. In June 2006 "Departure" was released and is a very personal project to him, which in various poetic forms follows the last twelve months of his life and according to him, the most turbulent yet. The album is an ambient, minimal experience using hardware and virtual synthesizers and treated moments of poetry. "I was pulled apart and was slowly changing. I saw what I really was and hated it, there was so much change and the thought of losing many things, shook me up. Despite the fact that I was comfortable in many arenas in life, I was lost and I needed finding and restoring, this album is a testimony to that ongoing process".

Live work was to be the next stage but after a try out gig, the time is not yet right. The need for the project to become more than a one man band will also be looked at. "The advantages of being a solo artist is that you are your own man, but that can breed laziness. I may need someone to push me and make me uncomfortable". "The thought of that terrifies me...my music has always been a personal thing to me...not any more it appears". The future is always moving, changing; evolving. Now recently divorced and living in Anglesey. He has become a reclusive figure. "The beauty of this place is that very, very few know me...I can go from place to place and shop to shop without being noticed which, at this time in my life is great for me. This is one fantastic island!"


For more information about 3rd Heaven Project, visit these sites!