Group Listening’s first album, Clarinet & Piano: Selected Works, Vol.1, was a haunting, reflective and lovingly considered selection box of musical reworkings. It featured reimagined tracks by the likes of Arthur Russell, Brian Eno and Robert Wyatt. But it was also much more than that. In making their own record of reimagined musical works, the two musicians were doing what all music fans do: comparing favourite tracks, turning each piece over for new meaning and developing a musical understanding of each other in the process.
While their first record was put together over an intense three-day period in a studio, Vol. 2 saw the pair take over Jones’ living room and gradually put its ten tracks together between September 2020 until March 2021. They would record one or two songs over a couple of days then pause for the week, building and ruminating on ideas; it allowed the music to take on a more ambitious nature but also allowed in bits of chat, traffic noise and other creaks and squeaks associated with home recording. “I feel that’s part of the album’s essential character; recorded on and off throughout the pandemic in a domestic environment out of necessity; a testament to how it was possible to work at that time” says Jones.