Oh, the gentle glories of the spring walk! On the new (free) Impulsive Habitat release Unterwegs, Dominic Razlaff leads us through the neighboring woods and nature reserve of Braunschweig, Germany, where he makes his home.
During the pandemic, more people than ever have been reconnected with nature. Those most fortunate are able to access areas such as Timmerlaher Busch. As Razlaff makes his way through the woods, one can feel the healing power of the birds and buds, reveling in the transition to spring.
But first, there is a storm. Many field recording sets build up to such an event, while Unterwegs launches from this point. This sequencing choice serves as a metaphor for the global condition; we are all, at varying degrees, emerging from a storm. As we do, blessings await: sight and sound and scent, as implied by the cover image. When “Stürmisch” fades, the birds begin to play in the water that the deluge has left behind. We hear the sound of Razlaff’s footsteps on the path, before he pauses to drink in the sound of the local fauna. The distant traffic is barely noticeable; instead, the pleasant sound of passers-by.
A morning dove greets the day with a comforting coo. Bicycle wheels spin; chapel bells toll; the world seems sane again. Then Razlaff enters the forest, with an ever richer sonic field. Flowing water and playful birds create the impression that one has wandered far from civilization into something ancient, although in this particular case the escape is not far away. The invitation is extended to the listener as well: to find one’s spot, to remember we are visitors on this world, to allow our problems to be muted by the restorative power of field and forest, storm and stream. (Richard Allen)