Loraine James pays homage to Julius Eastman on new album for Phantom Limb

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London-based producer Loraine James pays homage to American composer Julius Eastman on a new album for Phantom Limb.

Building Something Beautiful For Me reimagines, reinterprets and responds to original works from the late great composer, whose legacy has been somewhat forgotten since his passing in 1990.

In the summer of 2021, Phantom Limb helped to facilitate a connection between Loraine and Eastman’s brother Gerry who supplied a zip drive of Eastman originals, as well as Renee Levine-Packer & Mary Jane Leach’s 2015 biography Gay Guerilla and transcribed MIDI stems from the label co-founder James Vella.


The resulting LP is a beautiful ode to his musical influence: a sonic meeting of the minds. Loraine pairs samples, motifs and imagery with inspiration from Eastman’s catalogue, which she slices up and pulls apart, adding her signature IDM touch and adhering to the minimalist approach Eastman was known for.

Born in Manhattan in 1940, Julius Eastman was a composer, vocalist and pianist known for his work in minimalism and his powerful bass vocal tones. In 1990 he sadly passed away, homeless and broke, due to substance-addiction, and his contributions and musical talent were overlooked. This release sets out to reinstate his position as a boundary-breaking 20th century composer.

Since 2015, Loraine James has released a string of acclaimed EPs and LPs through Hyperdub, AD93, New York Haunted and Fu Inle Records. Her latest release for Ghostly International was the first under a new moniker, Whatever The Weather, which showcased the ambient side of her tastes and productions.

1. Maybe If I (Stay On It)
2. The Perception of Me (Crazy Nigger)
3. Choose To Be Gay (Femenine)
4. Building Something Beautiful For Me
5. Enfield, Always
6. My Take
7. Black Excellence (Stay On It)
8. What Now (Prelude To The Holy Presence Of Joan D’Arc)

Listen to lead single ‘Maybe If I (Stay On It)’.


Loraine James will be playing the album live alongside the London Contemporary Orchestra at Queen Elizabeth Hall in the Southbank Centre on 2nd October.

Building Something Beautiful For Me will be released on 7th October.