"An arbitrary succession of more or less irritating sounds"

Sunday, 22 May 2011

The Power of 'Al'

Pausal's hymnal, orchestral, tidal "Autumnal" enchants, the appeal of all these 'als' perhaps subliminal - esp. to a Guy Called Al. Gorgeous and expansive, “Autumnal” trails a forthcoming cassette release of the same name by the cuddly but unfluffy Hampshire duo - due in June (6/7/2011) on Alex Cobb’s Students of Decay (Edition of 100, so look sharp).

Pausal: "Autumnal" by Students of Decay

Their set at The Cube last May was great, putting Chihei Hatakeyama, whom they effectively warmed up for in a somewhat chilly shade.

Hanging halfway-house with Hampshire homies, however briefly, I mentioned to Alex and Simon, not critically, but discursively, talking trajectories of influence and this'n'that'neverything, that their sound had about it more than faint resonances of Stars of the Lid. This was somewhat muttered into (metaphorical) beard, as SotL had kind of become the default knee-jerk referent deployed by Every Reviewer And His Wife in seeking soundalikes for the slow-and-low neo-symphonic upwellings of a new wave of ambient-drone-crones, and it was tired (like SotL's sounds), I knew. But they were happy (tape hiss made them?) to acknowledge SotL’s status as lowlight legends. And undeniably reminiscent this “Autumnal” is, it has to be said, of the cadences of some of SotL’s early-mid period (circa The Ballasted Orchestra / Avec Laudenum).

"Autumnal" sounds very much still in the vein of their acclaimed Barge debut, Lapses (review), and its older smaller relative, Pausal ep (review) (plus, incidentally, see prefiguring autumnal cover below)

While we're here, worth noting that one half of Pausal, Alex Smalley, with sometime string-y contributor, Svitlana Samoylenko, make up Olan Mill, whose fine Pine (on Serein!) is still fragrant.

Olan Mill - An Obedient Ear from Serein on Vimeo.

Olan Mill - A Heavy Leg Cycle from Serein on Vimeo.

Gorgeous Pausal-curated mix (tracklist here) as a bonus for reading this far!

Pausal - Pausal Mix by _type

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