Tor Lundvall — The Seasons Unfold Sampler
(Strange Fortune SF5, 2007, CD)
by K. Leimer, Published 2008-10-01
Lundvall seems stubbornly drawn to subject matter already covered. His 2006 Empty City drew context and settings from a topic covered by composers as disparate as Aaron Copland and Henry Cow. His responses to the setting were familiar, trading off the usual associations between the manscape and sound, but accomplished with a sensitivity and directness that are also particular to his work. And now a sample anyway, of another aural stab at the Quattro Stagioni that is neither Vivaldi nor Carlos. There are four short pieces on this EP sampler, all gently pulsed and built on subtly accretive arcs. One is even a song of sorts, sounding like an unfinished cut from Eno’s Another Day on Earth, with an evanescent female voice breathing the words through the slow and shifting currents of lovely and gently ramped envelopes trailing in and out of their own auras. Unlike the sometimes strident tonalities and found sounds of Empty City these pieces – particularly “The Backyard” or “November’s Fields” – aren’t nearly as soundscapish, exuding instead a structured sense of calm and passing, undisturbed and apparently free of the well-documented associative clichés hovering in and around these musical seasons. The EP implies the promise that while basing the work on a now-cliché premise Lundvall will protect his audience from the predictable and instead sketch out some newish associations. But after this brief aside, acting as the precursor to a four CD set, one wonders what more is actually needed.
Related artist(s): Tor Lundvall
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From the press release:
To Wake a Dream in Moving Water takes from Echo Us' past and spins it into a whole new direction, one closer to traditional acoustic Celtic music than ever before.
To Wake a Dream in Moving Water was composed and recorded during the first few months of 2017. Although Celtic influenced and comprised of a number of re-workings of Irish folk tunes and Breton aires, the album is still in large part new and original Echo Us music that fits right in the Echo Us ‘canon’. “Wake” is a natural progression from “A Priori Memoriae”, which was released to critical acclaim in Europe in 2014.
To Wake a Dream in Moving Water is Echo Us’ ‘Celtic’ album that was planned for a long time but never executed because of the work on the trilogy that came before it. The album title is a typical ‘Echo Us’ play on words which one can find their own meaning.
“It is also both evocative of the Oregon rain, which I am told is not too unlike the rain in Ireland.”(Matthews)
To Wake a Dream in Moving Water is also a comment on conception- which was unintentional when the lyric was written. Matthews surprised himself a few months after writing it, realizing that the song was actually about the nitty gritty, biological workings of what happens when a child is conceived. The folk song it derives from musically describes a courting ritual, one that even today we can all relate to in our own way.
“Come With Me Over the Mountain" in acapella was the musical inspiration for the song, and came into my consciousness after the lyrics were written a few months prior. “ (Matthews)
As with all Echo Us recordings, a number of seeming coincidences resulted in connections being drawn where prior there were none. Another experience of similar capacity was found in oboe samples from A Priori Memoriae that echoed the traditional “May Morning Dew’, also reworked for guitar on the new album.