You’ll fall in love with Volume Flow.
Pausal‘s music is as essential as a heartbeat, a kind and love-struck ambient. Dreaming in the daylight, their slow drones are populated with well wishes and fulfilled destinies. Alex Smalley and Simon Bainton have a love for and an appreciation of nature and her many forms, and their love is made alive through these swaying sounds. The cup overflows.
Bountiful, tranquil, and generous, Volume Flow is a visit from serenity herself. Never in danger of falling into a saccharine trap, Volume Flow glimmers with a light fantastic, pouring through lush leaves and slipping through secret brooks, as if it were a scene from Daphne du Maurier’s Frenchman’s Creek, a transparent wash of warm, gilt-edged music. The gentle ambient contours reflect the soft English countryside. Cornwall, Bath, The Lake District, Lincoln, Somerset, Winchester, Surrey, Devon, or The Yorkshire Dales. Wherever it is, it’s a safe, glowing place, and pleasing on the eye; a remedy against an attack of cynicism and the fatigue of living in a world thinly disguised as the depths of hell.
The instrumental and improvised pieces on Volume Flow were further refined, becoming like fine wines in their post-production. Drugged drones strafe in the tiger-striped fingers of sunlight, and the translocation of the music is a smooth transition from one place to another. The unspooling, romantic music doesn’t feel rushed, either.
The countryside spreads out before the listener in the same way that the improvised, long-form pieces widely yawn. The fields stretch out and change in small degrees, like stone walls dividing and separating the land, seguing into new fields and areas that share common similarities. But a walk through a kissing-gate reveals a new pasture and a wider meadow, revealing subtle differences. Turning shades enter the music, darkening as if taking shelter under a lone, rogue tree, the tones rustling against lavender, bending the golden petals of a sunflower, and then opening up with a brighter corona of passing sunshine.
“Volume”, in this instance, is a referral to both the liquid state and the audio level, but the music only swells when it’s appropriate. The slow drone will rise and then pass, lapsing on a day of perfect, uninterrupted sunshine. This is essential. (James Catchpole)
Reviewer’s note: The stunning artwork is ‘Rosa Landscahft’, from German artist Susanne Steinmann.