Composer Erland Cooper has been described as ‘nature’s songwriter’ due to his penchant for including the sounds of birds in his recordings.

One of his claims to fame is that he composed the soundtrack for a show celebrating the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, although his latest work is sure to upstage that achievement by a country mile.

Astonishing as it sounds, his record company Decca signed him up knowing that it would have to wait three years to hear his latest recording as Cooper had deliberately buried the master tape for his new album in the wilds of The Orkneys, unsure if his work would survive the elements.

Next month, the Scottish musician will be staging a concert in Totnes ahead of the release of the album, enigmatically titled Carve The Runes Then Be Content With Silence.

The Scottish musician said he was looking forward to playing in the South Hams town, as it reminded him of the island where he grew up.

“I often feel when artists do tours they tend to take in these large cities that everyone knows, but Totnes reminds me of Orkney in a way. It’s really about community,” he said.

Cooper’s ambient music, meshing storytelling with a blend of traditional instrumentation and electronica, has garnered praise from poet John Burnside and resulted in a collaboration with Paul Weller, formerly of The Jam.

Although melodic and accessible to mainstream audiences, his work is not what you would expect to hear in the charts. Not that this worries him.

“There’s an appetite for music in all forms. There’s always people that are drawn to something that is different or unique. For me, my music is always inspired by the natural world.”

His third studio album and the way it was conceived could be construed as either a brilliant PR stunt or a profound artistic statement. Cooper not only buried the master tape but he deleted all the digital files, having saved copies only of the score, which he entrusted to Weller, novelist Ian Rankin and radio presenter Elizabeth Alker.

However, he left a teasing trail of clues in a map for people and his record label to find (remarkably, two fans eventually found the tape).

But why bury his work in the first place?

“The arts is one thing we don’t need to do but everybody needs in their lives. Government is asking people to retrain, to give up and change jobs - musicians often feel buried,” he said.

“I wanted to find a way to collaborate with the earth. In a world of instant gratification where you can order something and have it immediately, it is a meditation on value, patience and time.”

His concert in Totnes will form part of a select number of smaller shows, playing with a classical string quintet led by violinist Freya Goldmar, a group he affectionately refers to as “my nest”.

Regardless of the crowd’s reception to his new album, what is clear is that it will be a groundbreaking experience for everybody.

Carve The Runes Then Be Content With Silence (Mercury KX / Decca) is set for release on September 20.