“At any given time, there are always a handful of visionary guitarists who carve out their own compelling and distinctive niche, as well as many more who exhibit virtuosic technique or write consistently great songs. McPhee’s work checks off all three of those boxes, but his greatest moments reach another plane altogether where it feels like he is channelling something much deeper, more timeless, and almost supernatural“. (Brainwashed.com)
Dean McPhee’s deeply meditative and atmospheric music draws together a broad range of influences including British Folk, Dub, Ambient and Minimalism. He has a unique, singular sound that he has developed over many years using just a Fender Telecaster, valve amp and effects to craft his spacious, intricate and free flowing fingerpicked instrumentals. Since 2007 Dean has released 3 full length albums, an EP and 7″ singles on the Blast First Petite, World in Winter Recordings, Sonido Polifonico and Hood Faire labels. He has also appeared on several releases on the “unique and essential” (Dusted Magazine) Folklore Tapes label including a double split 10″, three cassette compilations and two compilation LPs.
Dean’s music has received national and international radio play including live sessions for BBC 6 Music DJ Tom Ravenscroft and BBC Radio Lancashire’s highly respected “On the Wire” show. His recordings have received critical acclaim from a wide range of publications including The Wire Magazine, The Quietus, MOJO, Record Collector Magazine, Brainwashed, Popmatters and Uncut Magazine. As well as touring the UK and Europe, Dean has opened for artists such as the Thurston Moore Band, Acid Mothers Temple, The Magic Band, Sharon Van Etten, James Blackshaw, Michael Hurley, Emeralds, Michael Chapman, Eric Chenaux, Josh T Pearson, Daniel Bachman, Lichens, Josephine Foster, Meg Baird, Bohren and der Club of Gore and Charalambides.
In 2012 Dean was invited by UK guitar legend Michael Chapman to join him in a guitar trio along with the guitarist Daniel Land to perform a live recreation of Michael’s experimental “noise” album “The Resurrection and Revenge of the Clayton Peacock” at The Lexington in London. In 2013 he was also asked to support Thurston Moore/Michael Chapman for their 2013 joint UK tour, including a performance at The Purcell Rooms in London’s South Bank Centre.
In 2014 Dean performed as part of a live collaboration with The Family Elan, Sageer Ali Khan and Hameed Brothers Qawall playing Qawalli and Indian Classical Music. In 2016 Dean performed as a special guest on all 8 dates of Wolf People’s (Jagjaguwar) 2016 UK tour. In the same year, he was also invited to compose a one off piece of music to soundtrack the British Artist Graham Dolphin’s retrospective at the National Gallery of Contemporary Art in Sunderland, along with other artists such as Richard Skelton, David Grubbs and Jad Fair.
In 2018 Dean joined the European booking agency “La Cordillere” alongside artists such as Michael Chapman, Marisa Anderson and Daniel Bachman, which led to him playing a 15 date tour in The Netherlands, Belgium and France on a double bill with fellow solo guitarist Andy Cartwright aka Seabuckthorn. He has also toured the UK twice and performed in Europe with Folklore Tapes/Hood Faire labelmates Sam McLoughlin and David Chatton Barker.
Dean’s music has been used in several short films, including a Tate short film about the artist Damian Hirst’s piece “For the Love of God” and Irish artist Lisa Byrne’s award winning short film about the Troubles “Taxi III Stand up and Cry Like a Man” which was screened at the Guggenheim in New York. In 2019 he composed a soundtrack for the short film “What is your identity if you are not your name?” by filmmaker Harry Wheeler which was shown live at Tusk Festival.
Dean has just finished recording “Witch’s Ladder”, his fourth full length album which is planned to be released in 2021