When we are lonely and sick of heart, we go to the friend we know. Honey-eyed nostalgia. Is it always an act of love? Questions like this are answered with the ‘An Act Of Love’ record of the same titular incantation. Since, to be honey-eyed to start with, one has to at least have a facsimile of life goodness inside of them. This is a simple bi-curious fascination with duality, how someone or something can be either confused or afflicted by their mental position. So the answer is: yes, if the one is simply full of good over evil, good will reign. With benign tolerance.
With this in mind, I initially listened to Earthen Sea’s ‘An Act Of Love’ in reverse track order. I wanted to pick out the leitmotif ideas Wagner proposed in 21st century classical music, which are inextricably linked to honey-eyed nostalgia. How can one break through the veil of continuous aural prose that speaks an act of love – basically a monologue love story? The answer would seem to be to break this honeycomb down into small digestible chunks, or reverse the process altogether. Since, if one has no nostalgia, the act of love should become so much more transparent. After all, what is an “act” of love? What makes up lust or affection is not inextricably linked to love. There has to be something deeper. And depth is something I soon find laced through the covetous ambient and dub techno styles of Earthen Sea.
The atmospheres are certainly dense, and density has its place in reminiscing; heavy emotions; sentimentality; nostalgic friendship with music. It sounds like the creator has had a tough time, and indeed the press release states this was a difficult period of life for producer Jacob when writing this, for it was when Jacob lost some traction in one’s life. But one is the way one is. Case in point – these melodies and percussions flow with an easy grace, ‘Above The Clouds’ more solidly so. They sound like fresh creations comparable with Wolfgang Voigt of Kompakt label ownership fame. Jacob long, like Will Long in the pure ambient drone field as Celer, utilises harmony as a counteragent to bitterness and inner torment. It is with this personal fortitude that Jacob’s productions shine with an amorphous glow.
Favourite tracks were ‘Apparent Lushness’, track three, ‘Delicately In The Sunlight’ for its gentility with a Wurlitzer type sound, almost glassy tones, and the straight-ahead propulsion of ‘Above the clouds’ that takes my ears to another place. Travel is a constant in this album, and in lieu of the past as a touchstone in this review’s theme, the use of travel can create many positive effects. Raise a heartbeat, or a few pounds to spend on this wonderful record from the esteemed Kranky Recordings today.