Clark

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At the age of nine, Clark played violin in an orchestra in St Albans – not that he was too keen. Classical music? When there was Public Enemy, Prince or Metallica to listen to? And yet a seed had been planted. “I remember thinking, ‘I’ll put this on hold for a bit and come back to it later’,” Clark recalls. In the three decades since, he’s created a set of intense, sonic odysseys. From his 2001 debut, Clarence Park, onwards, there’s been no template. Glowering techno and brittle, ghostly piano pieces; eerie, fluttering folktronics and found sounds – each time, something unexpected. Recently, Clark has made a successful plunge into composing highly individual, immersive TV and film soundtracks, sucking him back into classical music’s gravitational pull. With new album, Playground In A Lake – a loose sonic treatise on climate – Clark worked with string ensembles and collaborated with musicians including violinist Rakhi Singh, Grizzly Bear’s Chris Taylor and cellist Oliver Coates, whose vivid playing helps the album’s elegant opener, Lovelock, soar. Then there’s 12-year-old choirboy, Nathaniel Timoney, who performs a brace of haunting performances, like Small, a quietly devastating lullaby.

Despite nine studio albums, countless remixes and three soundtracks, Clark won’t take the easy option… ever. “It’s not conscious, but I quite enjoy that feeling of being out of my depth,” says a musician who revels in jumping into the unknown to see where he lands.

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