Olan Mill ~ Cavade Morlem

OMOut to sea, emerald waters glint in the dazzling light of July. As you swim, the crystal-blue water rocks against your body. Pure, heavenly shores wait for you. Ambient swells rise languidly and break gently against the shore, clouded in the white daze of a cool, metallic wave. Pink and cream seashells rest on the golden sand, deposited by the palm of the ocean. Beautiful eyes open and close gently, drinking in the landscape. Is this paradise?

Lower drones start to rock against and grind away at the higher drones. Clouds in transit pass slowly across the azure sky. Under the blue, pastoral drones shake the thin reeds and ripple the waters of a shimmering lake. An introverted capsule of light slowly starts to splay its arms out until the sound is drenched in nothing but light. There is nothing but light. Lungs that are shaped into enveloping drones repeatedly surge with a shy kind of insistence as they openly breathe in the clear, lightly salted air of the sea. The subterranean bass is a rock in restless waters. Playful dolphins swim and circle the elliptical drone. The music drifts away on the tide; it has always been this way, and it will always be this way.

The drifting nature of the music allows you to hone in on a tranquil zone that’s perfect for relaxing. The leafy greens are so beautiful they seem at first to be an impossible illusion, but the light that trickles in is very real. Airy tones inflate the song just enough for it to leave the ground behind in a light ascent. Cooler pockets of air occasionally buffer the sides, like the first nip of October. A surging bass couples itself to a lighter, string-based melody, and together, as smiling companions, they rise. The swells reach a tipping point and then gently cascade into a waterfall. Songs flow together smoothly – so much so, they could all be thought of as one long song.

Alex Smalley has once again given us some sublime ambient music to treasure. Cavade Morlem is a sedate record that walks with soft feet. It never wants to intrude – it just wants to be. It can help you in meditation and in mindfulness. The deep blue shades share similarities with the ambient songs of Tomonari Nozaki, especially those on his excellent Une Histoire De Bleu; the songs are treasures of the deep that rest in peace. As long as the music’s playing, nothing and no-one can hurt you. The music will touch your heart and keep it safe. This is music for imaginary landscapes, an island in your mind. She will always be with you. The music is a reassuring constant. An eternal tide. (James Catchpole)

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