Ice Yacht - Pillbox

Side A

1. Pillbox 13:30

2. Up and Over 01:28


Side B

3. Slow Water 09:09

4. Ice Spikes 05:36


All tracks by Philip Sanderson.



Release Date: 2020

Label: Snatch Tapes

Catalogue Number: tch 219

Sleeve Design: Layout and painting by Philip Sanderson


Review by Frans de Waard - Vital Weekly, number 1243 week 30


A few years ago I reviewed 'Pole Of Cold' by Ice Yacht, a musical project by former Storm Bug Philip Sanderson (Vital Weekly 981). Between then (2015) and now, Sanderson became more active and usually under his name. I am not sure why he pulled out the moniker Ice Yacht again unless it is to say that this is something quite different from his other work, which is quite electronic and at times 'poppy' (a term to be used carefully). As Ice Yacht we find him in a more abstract modus operandi. During the April lockdown he went out on the "Romney Marshes to capture ‘wild sound’, be it rusty gates, distant warehouse activity on the river Rother, or short wave radio signals", which back home were moulded into four pieces of music. Sanderson calls it "badly treated and manipulated before being fed into feedback loops", which may suggest something noisy and gruesome and that it surely is not. It is not necessarily very quiet and ambient. Rusty it surely is, and we can connect Ice Yacht to the many musicians working with similar strategies of lo-fi ambience based on field recordings taped onto old cassettes. It lacks Sanderson's current electronic and 'poppy' edge and sees him returning to the loopy scratched records of Storm Bugs, but perhaps less loopy and scratched. Different techniques and more experience in crafting experimental music resulting in thirty minutes of fine sonic bliss and at that, I must say, all too short. I would have loved more of this today. Had I known where I kept the download of the previous one, I would have played that straight after this. Now, I settled for this twice and that also went down well. (FdW) 


Review by Neil Kulkarni The Wire September 2020 

Sanderson has also put out new recordings under the name Ice Yacht, and Pillbox is four tracks of purely instrumental composition, wherein his vocal absence allows for a more introspective and wintry unfolding of his fascinations. The two long pieces here are key. “Slow Water" seems to follow an Antarctic dredger through an endless night, signs of life dopplering off downwards from its implacable movement, and "Pillbox" is isolationism par excellence, the terror and beauty of an endless ice shelf surveyed with a laser-like, steadicam feel, before unseen megabeasts start breaking through the mantle and pulling you under.