Exposé Online banner

Yonder Pond — Pondering Aloud
((Not on label) No cat #, 2017, LP + SP)

by Peter Thelen, Published 2017-08-02

Pondering Aloud Cover art

Yonder Pond is the recording project of Swiss drummer and multi-instrumentalist Rémy Sträuli, who first came to the attention of Exposé with his band Yolk back in the 2003 timeframe. In issue #29 we reviewed five of their albums. Pondering Aloud is the first recording to come out of this project, an eight-song LP plus a two-track single packaged together, and like too many others these days, there are no plans for a CD release, but the entire ten songs can be downloaded at the Yonder Pond Bandcamp site. This is almost a total solo project, though Sträuli uses three names to identify the members of the fictitious trio: Emyr Taurelis is the vocalist, formerly of the Jolly Satanists, Rembrandt van der Straal on piano and keyboards, was supposedly born at the Apple rooftop concert on January 30th, 1969 at the Paradiso in Amsterdam, and lastly, female drummer Remily Layne, formerly of beat-prog legends Blutti Moose. All three are in fact Sträuli, playing drums, percussion, keyboards, and singing. There are several real guest musicians contributing, including Stef Strittmatter handling all guitars and sitars, Pascal Grünenfelder on bass, Markus Strauss on flute, and Beat Luthi on backing vocals, track depending. The album (along with the single) presents a concept that is detailed in “the story” on the back of the LP, which is fairly simple and straightforward and not to be taken too seriously. Most of Sträuli’s songwriting influences seem to come from that magical time of the late-60s Beatles and many other psychedelic and proto-prog bands that came in their wake, most notably Syd Barrett era Pink Floyd, as well as his post-Floyd solo work, and perhaps Kevin Ayers as well, with plenty of early 70s progressive rock apparent in the arrangements throughout. Opener “Time Flies” pretty much has it all, and serves as a calling card for what is to come. One of the finest three minutes on the LP has to be “Aviary Lament” where the Barrett influence is heard clearly in the vocal refrain. The A side of the single presents the catchy and melodically colorful “Who Do They Think They Are,” but it’s the single’s B side “The Mope” that presents one of the most memorable tunes of the entire set, a true masterpiece of songcraft and arrangement, where flute and piano carry the main melody and solos, with bass and guitar adding support. Pondering Aloud is a winner, beginning to end, and will especially appeal to listeners with a sensitivity for the classic era that it seems to have come from.


Filed under: New releases, 2017 releases

Related artist(s): Rémy Sträuli / Yonder Pond

More info
http://yonderpond.bandcamp.com

Latest news

2021-04-01
New Aristocrats Live Album on the Way – No foolin'! These supreme musicians toured Europe early in 2020, just before touring ceased to be a thing musicians could do, and there were some hot performances captured. On May 7, some of these will be releases as Freeze! Live in Europe 2020. » Read more

2021-03-25
Return of Jerry Lucky's Progressive Rock Files – After much consideration and surprisingly, positive feedback, Jerry Lucky is announcing the launch of the progressive Rock Files podcast, featuring the latest progressive rock music from around the world. » Read more

2021-03-14
Jewlia Eisenberg RIP – The sad news has come out that Jewlia Eisenberg has died. As a founding member of Charming Hostess, Eisenberg changed the face of music, bringing together Balkan klezmer, American folk, and experimental rock in a distinctive blend that garnered much praise. » Read more

2021-03-11
RIP Roger Trigaux – The sad news has come to our attention that Roger Trigaux, the guiding force of Present and former member of Univers Zero, passed away on the evening of March 10, 2021 after a long ilness. » Read more

2021-02-14
SoundQuest Fest 2021 – SoundQuest Fest, first experienced as a live festival in Tucson Arizona in 2010 was created by ambient music pioneer Steve Roach. This 2021 event will unite a worldwide gathering of artists and audience members together for a 3-day online event unique in the realm of ambient music. From March 26-28th a continuous flow of streamed performances, audio-video wonder worlds and deep immersion zones will burn bright on Roach’s YouTube channel. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Hanggai - He Who Travels Far – Since their 2008 debut CD, this band from Inner Mongolia (currently resident in Beijing) has become a world music festival favorite, playing WOMAD, among others. That release blended the earthy sounds...  (2011) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues