Umchunga - Should Have Been Done By Now, white concrete architecture under blue sky

Should Have Been Done By Now

“Should Have Been Done By Now” slowly develops until it becomes absolute. It seismically engulfs everything that dares to stand in its way. Over the course of many minutes, the drone music has developed a strong set of muscles that wrap around the thin skeleton. The awesome, brutal avalanche always begins with a single snowflake. Likewise, the first, low-volume notes steadily increase until the whiteout is complete. Static grows and continues to grow, covering and then eventually smothering the smile of a sunny, optimistic melody with its dark, fur-coated body. Vocals lost in the deep echo of a surging storm dimly fade in and out. It is distant, and yet very close.

Tehran’s Nima Pourkarimi delves deep into the drone, but he also delves deep into the soul. This is thoughtful music that progresses with a definite sense of purpose. Guitar, synths and vocals sit beside a gentle assortment of field recordings, and the electronic processing is soft enough to burn away the threat of incoming danger. The drones sit inside the timbre of the bass and stalk their prey from this position; they are tonally blurred. Perched on the tips of the trees, the vocals cry out. It is a desperate cry that contains a subtle kind of urgency, but this cry is also a reassurance of the music’s destiny, and because of that it’s oddly soothing. The higher drones, when blended together with the growling throb of the bass, conjure the music’s mysticism. The tones glint in the light, and the higher drones are noticeably sharper. They’re clearer by now, and they’re not blocked by the previous covering of snowy static.

The notes darken as the sky fades to black. Delays and echoes leave quiet treads as they hunt the woods, like nocturnal creatures on the prowl. A mammoth-like mountain is buffeted by pockets of cool, drone-flecked air. Slowly, the clouds start to release their snowflakes, and as they drop they swirl around serenely. But seconds later, they begin to cry out in shock as they gasp for air and try to acclimatize to their new surroundings. The static picks up, and the womb is a distant memory. “Should Have Been Done By Now” moves as slowly as a skilled predator. It waits until the time is right, and only then do the drones strike. It all starts with a single note; a spark can cause a prairie fire.

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