microphones in the trees: channelers / softest / braeyden jae

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

channelers / softest / braeyden jae

«Essex is the 2nd album by Channelers (Ashan, gkfoes vjgoaf, etc). Expansive minimalism. Bridging the synthetic and organic. The repetitive fissle of a stream, the fluidity of its motion, and the clarity of its composition. The collection utilizes a diverse palette, devoting a unique ensemble to each piece. As a whole, it promotes a neutral space in favor of nurturing one’s physicality. Channelers is Sean Conrad, based in Oakland, California». inner islands

When it comes to Inner Islands, I never have doubts about the quality of music presented. Well-established provider of lovely ambient tunes and blissful new age meditations, Sean Conrad – is the man behind the Islands and also behind the Channelers alias. Being a huge fan of everything Sean does I fell in love with "Essex" from the very first minutes. Opening with 11-minute "Rest" composition, it immediately sets the mood to relaxed, so it's not really possible to do something else than nap while it unfolds with beautifully crafted loops. Gentle instrumentations reminds Ashan a lot (another Conrad's project), but stays wordless and beatless most of the time. I always wondered how he manages to create these endless, so nicely selected loops, because they aren't annoying even after very long period of time, they just give you space – to dream, to feel, to stay in peace with yourself and the environment. I'd call it meditation, but this music is not just a tool for certain purpose, there is always something more, about the life itself, about every single day and simple activities like cooking, drinking tea or maybe just looking out the window... When you wake up and see bright sunny morning outside after few weeks of cloudy greyness, this tape will be a perfect start to the day!

«six wishes is the 2nd full-length release from softest (braeyden jae, WYLD WYZRDZ, etc). The sounds from this project are invariably in sympathy with the name of their maker. Gentle rain on a dark green landscape. A warmth to gather yourself around. The pieces, instrumentally, are comprised of guitar, synths, keyboards, discreet sampling, and field recordings. softest is Braden McKenna, based in Salt Lake City, Utah.”». inner islands

It was a bit surprising to see Braden returning to his softest alias after immense number of releases as Braeyden Jae, but listening to the tape you'll immediately understand the decision. Softest side of Braden's guitar rumble brings here same kind of magic heard on "Essex" tape – slowly unfolding spirals of guitar bliss mixed with pleasant synth pads and field recordings, and once again Inner Islands release makes this world little happier. Usually Braden's ability to hypnotise comes from the same source as Sean's – nicely selected loops and almost invisible change of their flow during the composition. But this time something else comes into play – carefully picked echo intertwined with thorough layering creates another level of perception. And at certain moment it gains more effect in the mix with field recording natural noises. Beauty of the melodic lines drowns in reverberation and tape hiss – just to be born again, to change its state but to remain itself, like rain over the landscape, exactly. Isn't it what we all want?

«On Fog Mirror, SLC based musician Braden McKenna, has crafted a weighted, textural album of architectural drone punctuated with stirring washes of crackling static and arcing tones that gather like visible precipitation on an early morning windshield. Fog Mirror is braeyden jae's most deliberately paced, emotionally resonant record to date; the aural equivalent of watching a thick gray blanket envelop some distant, cliffed coastline». whited sepulchre

You may know Ryan Hall, who started Whited Sepulchre as founder of the fellow blog Tome to the Weather Machine, charity netlabel Heligator Records and co-founder of Denver-based Goldrush Music Festival. First two releases at his new label Whited Sepulchre are Fog Mirror vinyl and Braden's cassette split with Ant'lrd. Fog Mirror starts at the territory where softest ends – lush of pink noise covers every melody and every riff produced by Braden's guitar and melts all magic loops into thawing crunch of late spring snow. Overall composition here acts like variable high-level wind, changing directions and power, but always staying way too high to notice any small detail. Everything drowns in everything. Forests, lakes, mountains... Reverb takes part in it too, gaining subtle melodies to the level of this wind, giving them almost astronomical scale, wrapping whole planet into cocoon of dense magnetic fields, cosmic rays, gliding at the atmosphere, meteor showers... At the same time someone standing at the bus stop far away from city, hears thunder, sees lightning and thinks of the endlessness of time, of connection between people, of home... Breathing clean air charged with electricity. Someone small in the endless corridor of the two mirrors facing each other: mirrors of perception and thoughts about it, surfaces of feelings and contemplation on them. Music permeates these surfaces, but can we do the same? Or it will another reflection, or reflection of the reflection, finally faded in the fog? Infinite is not something big, it's here, right now – in every gaze, in every touch, in every tiny drop of fog... Music knows it.

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