Opinion by Richard Baird Posted 17 July 2018
Primitive Trust is the collaborative project of musicians Will Saul and Tom Mangan, and is based around the tools at hand. These included Ableton, an MPC 2000, Roland 101, Fender Rhodes, FX pedals and Juno. From these three EPs were created; Little Love, Fallen Down and Power On. Each EP features two or three original tracks linked by a creative approach that blends available tech, creative collaboration, instinct and feeling. The duo worked with London-based Post to develop covers, labels and pack shots. These incorporate commissioned artwork from renowned Californian illustrator Geoff Mcfetridge alongside bright colour blocking and hand lettering.
There are two essential components to the work, in the packaging and presentation of the tracks; the collaborative and personal nature of the EPs and the limitation of means; the to hand creation of the music. This manifests itself well in the simple and concise manner of Post’s combination of hand-drawn imagery and text, alongside blocks of solid single colour.
There is an evident personality within the artwork. It feels like a variation on Geoff Mcfetridge’s illustrations for a range of Nike SB t-shirts in its pen work, monochromatic nature and surreality. It is similarly playful but expresses something of collaboration, the tussle, the synthesis of two individual minds and the physical and emotional support in a shared creative endeavour. This personal, convivial and surreal tone, minimum means maximum expression is complemented by single bright spot colours and small details that include the barcode breaking free from its box and record hole as head.
The proportions of the canvas, the enduring format of the EP, is used to great effect to carry artwork and deliver a communicative intention. Each side, be it a solid colour and handwritten text, or monochromatic illustration, delivers an immediate and singular expression that works as an individual sleeve, as a collection of three or as images on digital music platforms. More work by Post on BP&O.