Eye

by Chui Wan

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about

Sometimes, the sun’s light glitters in your hand.

Chui Wan has always been preoccupied with light and sight. From the experimental, effect-laden outbursts of their bombastic debut White Night, to the prismatic psychedelic compositions of their self-titled followup, to the atmospheric, filmic opus that was 2017’s The Landscape the Tropics Never Had, Chui Wan is always seeing as they’re hearing, describing lush and light flights of thought as a gestalt of sight and sound. The band’s fourth studio album, Eye, makes this con-nection more explicit than ever: the mind’s eye and the doors of visual perception are referenced again and again on this, the band’s most accessible and profound achievement of affective songwriting prowess.

Eye moves quickly from opposite to opposite. It opens with a highlight, “Sun” (the eye in the sky), an immediate reminder that despite their bona fides as consummate experimentalists, Chui Wan is still eminently capable of crafting infectious pop melody. Perhaps, what you see is just dusk, sings band leader Yan Yulong on a track whose bright exterior, accentuated with thick vocal choruses and rivulets of ambient flute, conceals hidden lyrical depths. Perhaps the sunlight is never far away.

Later on the album this dynamic is reversed, like a photo negative. Over the years, bassist Wu Qiong has become an increasingly important vocal presence in the Chui Wan mix, and she pairs beautifully with Yan’s low register on the album’s haunted title track, ruefully harmonizing: The curtain’s pulled back / The abyss of the night sky, an endless sigh / Gods met and took back some light. Wu also closes the album with a poignant flourish on Eye’s soft and dulcet final note, “All Tomorrow’s Flowers,” a subtle nod to one of the band’s key early influences (The Velvet Underground) and an indicator of how much they’ve matured as artists.

Aside from the mystical, ever-cryptic lyricism — a constant throughout Chui Wan’s discography — sound-wise the band has shed some of their rougher edges on Eye. Much of the grit and dis-tortion that tinged earlier albums has been replaced with a high polish, a studio sheen achieved by producer Rusty Santos (Animal Collective/Panda Bear), who’s making his second appear-ance in the Chui Wan liner notes. Beside a few plaintive codas like the enigmatic “Silence Bought the Whole Lake,” Eye moves evenly and purposefully through its ten tracks, held together by propulsive percussion from new addition Wen Zheng and a dense sonic sculpture of voice, gui-tar, organ, brass, woodwinds, and Japanese strings. It’s Chui Wan’s most harmonious album yet, a metaphor for the band’s shifting perspective as their mind’s eye continues to sweep across the universe according to its own, singular rhythm.


Eye by Chun Wan will released by Maybe Mars Records on September 29, 2019.

credits

released September 29, 2019

2019年4至5月,歌曲录制于葡萄牙里斯本。

闫玉龙:人声 / 吉他 / 合成器 / 钢琴 / 大正琴
郭震:吉他/合成器/手鼓
吴琼:人声 / 贝司
文正:鼓

制作 / 录音 / 混音:Rusty Santos
录音棚:Namouche / Big Bit
客座乐手:Elmano Coelho(长号) / Lars Arens(萨克斯、长笛)
母带制作:Mike Bozzi
封面照片:王轶庶
平面设计:Vicson Guevara@Studio Guevara
歌词翻译:Josh Feola和孙小鸣

感谢以上所有朋友,以及颜峻、旋覆、韦玮、Kina Kim、宿辰。


All songs recorded in Lisbon, Portugal, April - May 2019

Yan Yulong: vocals / guitar / synthesizer / piano / taishokoto
Guo Zhen: guitar / synthesizer / congas
Wu Qiong: vocals / bass
Wen Zheng: drums

Recorded, mixed and produced by Rusty Santos at Namouche and Big Bit Studio
Guest Musicians: Elmano Coelho (trombone) / Lars Arens (saxophone, flute)
Mastered by Mike Bozzi
Cover art: Wang Yishu
Design: Vicson Guevara @ Studio Guevara
Lyrics translated by Josh Feola and Emma Sun

Chui Wan thanks everyone mentioned above, as well as: Yan Jun, Xuan Fu, Wei Wei, Kina Kim, Su Chen

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Track Name: Sun
清晨,太阳的光渐渐清晰
轻轻地,靠近你看到的距离
也许,你看到的只是清晨
清晨,太阳的光渐渐清晰

Early morning, the sun’s light slowly becomes clear
Gently, approaching from the distance
Perhaps, what you see is just the dawn
Early morning, the sun’s light slowly becomes clear

太阳在晴朗的天空里
感受自己和太阳的距离
有时,太阳的光在额头闪耀
有时,太阳的光在手中闪耀

The sun in the cloudless sky
You feel the distance between yourself and it
Sometimes, the sun’s light glints on your forehead
Sometimes, the sun’s light glitters in your hand

轻轻地,太阳的光已经远离
已经远离你看到的距离
也许,你看到的只是傍晚
也许,太阳的光从未远离

Gently, the sun’s light pulls far away
It’s already far away from the distance you can see
Perhaps, what you see is just dusk
Perhaps, the sunlight is never far away

太阳在晴朗的天空里
感受自己和太阳的距离
有时,太阳的光在额头闪耀
有时,太阳的光在手中闪耀

The sun in the cloudless sky
You feel the distance between yourself and it
Sometimes, the sun’s light glints on your forehead
Sometimes, the sun’s light glitters in your hand
Track Name: Silence Bought the Whole Lake
允许湖水什么也不反映
静止成船却深得千百尺湖心

Allow the lake’s surface to reflect nothing
The stillness forms a boat but understands the lake of a thousand feet deep

万一相逢有漩涡,谁来辨认你与我
激烈的中心已隐没,我仍四处爱余波

If there’s a whirlpool, who will identify you and I?
The climax has already passed, but I still love the fallout.

我是微弱的火在风中
重要的总是风而不是我

I am a feeble flame in the wind
The important thing is the wind, not me

每一夜都有属于,自己的燃料
来者不必持灯来,去者不必熄火去

Every night provides its own fuel
He who comes doesn’t need to light a lamp; he who goes doesn’t need to put out the fire

无人再推,可我们都在被
被推向边缘,十米二十米
未必每次把自己推向另一个
都会迅速地导致悬崖的诞生

No one pushes, but we’re all being
Being pushed toward the edge, 10 yards, 20 yards
Maybe not every time pushing yourself toward another
Will give quick birth to another cliff

所见成山,所不见在翻山
山连着山,有所爱必有所亡

What is seen forms the mountains, what is not seen climbs over the mountains
As mountain connects to mountain, where there is love there must be death

已到了离别才能够,赋予人力量的时候
你需要的是寻找者,而非真的找到你的
必须先作为岸醒来,然后堤石才醒来

When it’s time to leave, it’s time to bestow power
You need a seeker, not the one who actually find you
You must first wake up as the shore, and then the stone will be awakened
Track Name: I Hope Everything is as You Wished
每个房间,都有特别瞬间
每个房间,都有你的瞬间
陪你聊聊天,找找照片
划划旧照片,想想从前
记忆的快递员,来得突然
大声站在门前,送来画面

Every room has a special moment
Every room has your moment
Chatting with you, looking for photos
Slide old photos and think about the past
The courier of memory suddenly arrives
Loudly standing in front of the door, delivering the scene.

谢谢你的保管,谢谢你的照看

Thank you for the safekeeping, thank you for the care

新的房间,再一起向前看
新的房间,再不要回头看
整理旧物件,删删减减
拍拍新照片,挑挑选选
生活的评论员,仍然在线
委婉说出观点,表达意见

A new room, together we look forward
A new room, we don’t look back
We clean up our old things, delete, reduce
Take new photos, pick and choose
Life’s narrator is still online
Euphemistically voicing a point of view, sharing ideas

谢谢你的陪伴,谢谢你的期盼

Thank you for being with me, thank you for anticipation

希望一切如愿,希望一切如你所愿

I hope everything is as expected, I hope everything is as you wished.
Track Name: Gentle Binding Love
不是不在乎,实在是虚无缥缈;不是不在意,实在是虚无缥缈;人生最难,是缱绻温柔;既然如此,何不敞开心扉;既然如此,何不敞开心胸;人生将易,若有知己伴侣。

It’s not about not caring, it’s really just an illusion; it’s not about paying attention, it’s really just an illusion; the most difficult thing in life is being in love deep and gentle; why, then, should we not open wide our soul? why, then, should we not open our heart? life will be easier with bosom friends.
Track Name: Eye
透过青色的纹理
明珠在零星颤栗
睫毛为它纳清凉
扇去温煦的雾气

Through the blue-green grain
The pearl fitfully trembles
Eyelashes cool it down
Fan the warm fog away

它徐徐降临,大地在结霜
它隐没,随后掀开了幕帘
深渊向夜空,无尽的叹息
神相遇,带走了一些光

It’s coming down slowly, earth is frosting
It vanishes gradually, then the curtain’s pulled back
The abyss of the night sky, an endless sigh
Gods met and took back some light.
Track Name: Just Beginning
这是换乘也是起点
是拼图也是张白纸

This is both the transfer and the starting point
It’s both a puzzle and a blank sheet of paper

这是坐标也是象征
是苹果也是种滋味

This is both a coordinate and a symbol
It’s the apple and also the taste

丢掉的习惯不会去编造
起身穿过我们的孤独

Lost customs won’t be made up
Get up and pass through our own solitude

你很快赶来,阳光灿烂
告诉我,一切才刚刚开始

You rush over, the sun is shining brightly
Tell me, everything is just beginning
Track Name: Strait
大,大西洋的风,无情
肆意煽动着海浪
快,看,有一个人,正在
海浪上肆意地滑翔

Big, Atlantic wind, ruthless
Recklessly inciting the waves
Quick, look, there’s someone
Wantonly gliding on the waves

哦,多么勇敢
多么,莽撞

Oh, how brave
How rash

(不由得/不禁)让人为他担忧

Can’t help but worry about him
Track Name: The Earth is Blue like an Orange
你的心情,怎么样呢
冷暖自知,包装好它

How is your mood?
Self-awareness comes from within, package it well

你的心情,怎么样呢
冷暖自知,保护好它

How is your mood?
Self-awareness comes from within, protect it well

地球蓝得像一颗橙子

The Earth is blue like an orange
Track Name: All Tomorrow’s Flowers
睡吧 宝贝 轻声说再见
别哭 宝贝 在你醒来时

Sleep, baby, softly say goodbye
Don’t cry, baby, when you wake

所有明天的花朵都将盛开

All tomorrow’s flowers will be in full bloom

睡吧 宝贝 轻声说再见
啦啦 宝贝 恬谧入梦乡
睡吧 宝贝 蜜蜂悄悄说
啦啦 宝贝 在你醒来时

Sleep, baby, softly say goodbye
La la, baby, have sweet dreams
Sleep, baby, the bee gently whispers
La la, baby, when you wake up

所有明天的花朵都将盛开

All tomorrow’s flowers will be in full bloom