Monday, December 17, 2012

05. Mount Eerie - Clear Moon / Ocean Roar (PW Elverum and Sun)

There are forces, forces that we prefer to describe as “out there”: darkening and obscure to our touch, our everyday sentiments. Churning and rending, oblivious to our immediate concerns, operating under a sempiternal indifference. Phil Elverum might add that this purposeful act of externalization blinds us to the teeming ecosystems of our bodies, the fraying and reassembly of even our most precious memories and understandings, the continual decay offset only through steady application (say, diet) and industry (say, infrastructure). The keen eye of Italo Calvino’s Mr. Palomar, tending to his yard and struggling with the composition of its dimensions, observes that:

“A lawn does not have precise boundaries; […] A complicity seems to have been established between the sown grasses and the wild ones, a relaxing of the barriers imposed by difference of birth, a tolerance resigned to deterioration.”

Similarly, the easy and steadying cadences of “I Walked Home Beholding” finds Elverum discovering “A moment of clear air breathing, seeing the expanse,” having been “Tossed on the waves/ Blown onto land/ Grasping meaning/ In churning mess.” This dynamic of clarity wrought from the noise of life winds through Ocean Roar and its sister album Clear Moon. Conceived and performed in the same all-analog studio during a 15-month stretch, the two albums do not so much exist in opposition than illustrate the sequencing of two very distinct moods. Ocean Roar largely turns its attention to the forces opposite clarity and structure. In place of Clear Moon’s expansive songcraft, we have Sturm und Drang, clangor, droning vistas. This dark gravity limns the most potent expression of Elverum’s infatuation with the extreme sonic density of black metal, marking Mount Eerie’s furthest point of departure from The Microphone’s quintessential lo-fi indie pop — even further than the explorations and exhortations of Wind’s Poem. When volume is called for, the mix gets big in terms that should not be wholly unfamiliar to longtime fans of The Glow Pt. 2.

via Tiny Mix Tapes (read the rest there)

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