Lost, abandoned harbours and shadowed landscapes roll along the shoreline like low-lying, bleak clouds of foreboding grey, echoing a passage of years spent underneath a sliver of moonlight. The rise and fall of the sea an eternal breathing of deep blue. Despite the imagery Landforms exposes, the music isn’t unduly melancholic. An overcast atmosphere helps to dispel any lingering sadness at the inevitable erosion constantly taking place all around us. The music is tuned into a fascinating exploration of South-East England, and what returns to roam the scene when the light hangs low and the dark sets in.
The ocean view, and the gentle, undulating swells of the sea, influence the watery, fluid sounds of the fretboard, which lightly coasts over a thick, gloomy fog of drone that has enticed a hundred, fated shipwrecks. Coastal landscapes dagger out into the bay, yet the tranquility of the dark, navy blue ocean and the glowing, melodic lights that emerge lead us to safety. These melodies are beacons of light on the horizon, pinpoints of white modesty that slice through the gathering atmosphere and scatter the dense texture like lost victims of the sea who will never reach the promise of land.
Futuresequence’s debut release in their digital only series roams the fields, lakes, coastline and countryside, prowling like a lost creature stalking the land. Faint prints are left in the ground as a physical reminder that something has been this way before; inscribed indentations trace a path through the music. Sedately, we are led along a mysterious trail that is often neglected, but one that is all the more beautiful for its isolation. The fog descends, through which only recurring, glistening melodies shine through. In ”Cloud Gazing”, trails of guitar, lost in reverb, surround a deeper drone like a pack of notes instead of wolves, exposing the ambience to shining white lights instead of gleaming white jaws. Danger lurks all over the landscape, but Wolf Maps quickly reminds us of the natural beauty that accompanies the high cliff or the tide that may return sooner than one expected; the rocky trail that, although risky, provides a striking view of the English coastline.
“Never Ending Trails of Light That Float Upwards” is a beautiful, nocturnal excursion, as delicate notes shimmer lightly like the grass tickling against us. “As We Moved Through The Sullen Night” is the atmospheric peak; a stunning, aquatic dive. Thoughtful notes ripple against a fog of drone, swelling in a beautiful, surging wave and destined to batter against the coast. Ocean deep due to its atmosphere, Landforms is romantic, emotional and easily shattered.
As the looming clouds roll in towards the land, hovering over a pitch black, barren countryside, only a light breeze reaches the rooted trees. The closer, “Wolf In The Headlights”, is the longest piece at just over four minutes. Finally, the guitar breaches through the turbulent mist; escaping for the bright lights of hope while being pursued by a fog coated creature on all fours. Eventually, we become as lost as an abandoned ship drifting over a forgotten ocean.
Beware of the wolves, but don’t be afraid.
Don’t be afraid. (James Catchpole)