James Murray

The Sea In The Sky

If you look up at a pyramid of passing clouds, you can imagine shapes and structures breaking through. The sea is in the sky, and the sky is in the sea. One always overlaps the other. One light, diluted timbre bleeds into the other. The borders of the grey-blue sea segue and then vanish against the clouds that hang in the sky. They sit right together.

The Sea In The Sky hones in on the undying romance and the inseparable relationship that binds the sea with the sky. The low-lying drone of ‘Altitude’ blends itself, chameleon-like, against the high peaks of a high note, and the two circulate and revolve in what is a soft, detuned motion, spiralling in a strange kind of drone-courtship, lovers forever. The sea stares up at the sky with a deep, consuming affection that glazes its eyes, and the sky stares blankly back. The sky can be thought of as an empty sea that has been drained of its water. Infinite and vast, the drones are sweeping oceans that roll and crash against the slow walking clouds. The sea’s presence is felt in the air, because droplets of water fall from the sky. The clouds produce rain. These clouds are always serene and ever-shifting, always progressing, even at a slow pace. In fact, the pace doesn’t really matter. They are moving nonetheless. Drone-led vapours leave behind traces of themselves, their notes lagging into the past like the white-lined trails of a 747, and sailboats leave behind their soft currents.

Clouds dissolve. The music transcends and enters a phase akin to that of a zen-focused meditation. A lower, metallic drone hovers and thrums like an observing UFO. Drones splash up against the shore of the music, rolling in on regular patterns and rhythms. They are as endless as the sea. The long-form pieces are deeply layered and infinite in scope. These are both seascapes and skyscapes, covered in the white, cloudy foam of a drone. Flotsam floats on by. Terrifying in their size, ships made out of cirrus clouds are anchored to the sky.

Serene, placid and extremely ambient, The Sea In The Sky is breathtakingly beautiful. The ambient music is as spacious as the sky up above, and at times the drones sizzle as they come into full contact with the sun. At this altitude, there isn’t an escape. Trance-inducing, the sea never stops beating, the swells echoing those of the respiratory system. The skin fluctuates as the air is taken in. The light glints against the side of a note, making it sparkle.

The music plumbs the depths of the sea, too; you can see the highly exotic – and sometimes the bizarre, outrageous beauty of – creatures that live their life in the deep blue sea, of those that can survive even at extremely low temperatures. The visibility is low, and the drones sit in their deep and dank home. A thin rhythm inhales and exhales; it’s the rhythm of the tide, as old as the first day. For both artist and label (VoxxoV), the horizon’s limitless.


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