When d_rradio state that ‘the intention of their music is to bring comfort and light to the most dark and difficult hours, and to make you feel alive’ they build expectations, big ones, and the delivery of such promise is what could ultimately make or break their relationship with their prospective audience. In their latest release, Forecast, they deliver that promise in fantastic style. I have put this album in all sorts of playlists, shuffled around it and whenever those piano notes at the beginning of the album started playing I always found myself that much more relaxed, happier, a split-second reaction that I have come to wholeheartedly embrace.
The album cover would give insight into a darker, sadder atmosphere. A dark grey wretched sky, splattered with rain and what looks like frost in the making is hardly the sight one sees and thinks ‘well, this is a fine day to go out and enjoy life’ and while the music withheld in the album reflects that coldness, what it doesn’t reflect is this foreboding greyness. The layers of manipulated soundscapes bring to mind The Caretaker’s sense of things passed, but filters out the melancholy nostalgia, it brings back only the good memories. The sense of self pity or unfairness that many people live through at certain points in their lives magically disappears and for the three quarters of an hour that make up this album this feeling gains strength, assuredness is attained.
As far as the nature of the music on this album goes, it fits the ambient profile perfectly. Apart from a few moments on the album, namely in “Quiet One”, “The Age of Stars” and “Laika”, Forecast is more than happy to sit in the background and watch you reach a better state of mind and even when it intrudes, it does so ever so gently. It won’t shock or startle you, but gently caress you, make you feel warmer, more resolute in your life decisions. It is that friend everyone has, the guy or girl who might not be a permanent fixture in one’s daily life but comes to the fore in tough times. Listening to this album summons that person, opens the door with the first track and with the dying seconds of the album, after the job is done, the same notes are echoed and the door is shut, leaving behind a more optimistic protagonist. The shadows of fears and failures have all gone to sleep and it is time to start a new day. (Mohammed Ashraf)