offthesky – The Lowern Decay EP
Posted In: Jason Corder, John Boursnell, Offthesky, offthesky - The Lowern Decay EP, The Lowern Decay EP, Wist Records
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The Lowern Decay is just the latest release from Jason Corder’s offthesky project – over twenty transmissions in the last decade, and numerous collaborations with the likes of Radere, Darren McClure and Billy Gomberg…
offthesky works typically blend the fizzes of computer processing with flashes of guitar-pedal driven washes of sound – in fact, the halfway point between the grainy, handmade feel to the record sleeves and the embedded generative sound producing program embedded on the offthesky website might be the ideal statrting point for approaching the offthesky aesthetic; the way the human hand apparent in the photos and prints (The Lowern Decay’s cover is a lovely example of the effectiveness of simple one colour printing) rubs up against the cerebral, endlessly (re)generating system of the web work.
The Lowern Decay presents us with two longform works, and two miniatures – one of each on each cd. Rust To Blood gives us deferred release – opening with rumbles, buzzes and fragments of processed guitar – the soundtrack to glaciers tearing up boulders, it is not until ten minutes in that we get the gentle guitar arpeggios and simple bowed material familiar from say, The Boy With The Golden Cough (on Rural Colours 2011). The effect is of the clouds pulling back, and sun illuminating a drowned valley. Appropriate, perhaps – ‘Lowern’, in climatology, stands for the six factors that produce climate – and when a scratchy, funereal violin adds to the submerged sounds, the sense of decay, decline, descent is palpable.
The two shorter tracks here – Ifward and Brightly Fades The Way – are warm, clouds of sound; the first coloured by touches of more violin, the second organ-like in its opening half, overtaken by Chris Abrahams-esque piano-chords and flurries.
Lowern Decay, closing this impressive trio, marries almost-piercing tones to more billowing washes, piano clusters touching the edges of the hints of granular-choral like lines. The gentle introduction of a low-bass loop frames the second half, holding the texture in some kind of shape, before the track signs off in a rising wave of tiny clicks, repeated keyboard pulses, and a final smudge of strings and delicate piano. A beautiful way to end a thoughtful album. – Great stuff!
- John Boursnell for Fluid Radio