Tuesday, 6 August 2013

Landerim - SHALLOW DRAW

Album review by kev@thesoundofconfusion.co.uk


Larry DeMellier's Landerim project is an interesting one. Originally from New York, and as far as we can gather created pretty much as a solo venture, Landerim is now a trio and have moved to Pittsburgh. This has all the hallmarks of a DIY recording; had it been taken to a big studio with an expensive producer these songs would have sounded different, but that would probably be detrimental to the music. This is hardy amateurish mumblings, in fact it's quite enchanting just the way it is. You realise this from the off, as first track 'Little Boy Crystal' seems to be cocooned in a cloud of haze that is no doubt down to the lack of heavy handed production. The vocals and effects, particularly what sound like birds chirping, sound really quite magical.

There are short pieces, little more than sonic experiments, but again this is all part of the charm and can be heard on the wind chimes and beats of 'Skyspray ~ Sail On Solar Winds' and 'Row ~ Recess' softly drifts along for just over a minute-and-a-half,  There are ambient pieces like the gentle and uneventful hum of 'The Thaw' but it still sounds good, as does the drifting, fleeting 'Yesterday Marooned'. Final track 'A City Trout' brings in more chimes and hazy sound effects that kind of tie up the various elements of the record into one short but sweet burst. If however, you'd rather have "proper" songs then there are plenty to be found.

Take a look at the pretty acoustic lament 'If Your Smile Was Meant For Me', like much of this album it sounds like a cross between Daniel Johnston and Syd Barrett, and that's praise indeed. As this album is generally very subtle and would fit the description of dreampop, it's almost a surprise that 'Over Land and Sea ~ Delivered' has a touch more edge. But just a touch. 'Shallow Draw' is a strange waltz that makes use of some antiquated sounding instruments and 'The Black Swarm' takes you a on strange atmospheric journey. On 'Flatfoot Back To Dryden' they come close to modern lo-fi dreampop bands. Overall it has to be said that 'SHALLOW DRAW' is unlikely to win awards but it's a pleasant listen all the same.







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