Matthew Dear – Black City Teaser from Ghostly International on Vimeo.

Matthew Dear is one of electronic music’s great sonic innovators and impresarios, co-founder of Ghostly International and Spectral Sound (Ghostly recently celebrating 100 landmark releases), and recording extensively under musical identities Audion, False, and Jabberjaw. But for all that, I think it’s his voice as a songwriter and musical imagineer, as in the releases in his own name, that’s most vital. There’s a directness to his compositions and lyrical voice that’s stunning, wrapped in elaborate textures and grooves but irresistible.

All of this is reason to look forward to Black City, the full-length Matthew Dear coming out in August, as a potential highlight of the summer and 2010. This week, we get a little taste of that record with the release of “Soil to Seed,” a relaxed treat with signature doubled-up vocals, as comfortable as a July watermelon. If you happen not to like my fruit metaphors, sit back and enjoy the free download:

I’ll say this: it’s over way, way too soon, which is probably a good sign.

Also released this week is a short teaser promo trailer video. These things are all the rage these days, but this particular entry feels less like a billboard, and more like a visual appetizer, complete with shadowy, gothic imagery undulating in glorious black and white. From the little snippets we get, it seems the visuals get the same stark richness as Dear’s productions. A spokesperson for Ghostly tells us more video is planned. Stay tuned to Create Digital Motion for more on the art direction (and other Ghostly visuals).

It’s a Ghostly release, so in the post-album age you can bet that you’ll get a case for why you should purchase or even preorder the record. Those details are a bit involved, so at this point I quoth the press release:

Pre-ordering Black City on iTunes (starting July 13th in North America & July 20th elsewhere) and The Ghostly Store (starting July 13th) gets you the manic disco odyssey “Little People (Black City)”, as well as exclusive non-album track “Innh Dahh” upon the record’s arrival. (After August 3rd, “Innh Dahh” will no longer be available at iTunes.)

As well as the usual formats, Black City will also be released in a limited edition Totem design made by an award winning design firm Boym, who won the Cooper Hewitt Design Museum’s National Design Award in 2009. More details on the Totem design coming soon.

Ghostly’s pricing is a steal – US$16 gets you vinyl and CD and instant bonus download; $8 gets you high-quality MP3.

Stay tuned for more on the release.