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

2019-04-10
The Pineapple Thief to Tour North America – November and December of 2019 will see The Pineapple Thief bringing their music to Canada, Mexico, and the US, and famed drummer Gavin Harrison will be on board. The band has been touring extensively in Europe, but North America will be new territory for them. » Read more

2019-03-25
Scott Walker RIP – Noel Scott Engel, better known as Scott Walker, was one of the most intriguing and enigmatic musical figures in the second half of the 20th Century. His strange career started with The Walker Brothers, an American pop group that featured no one named Walker and no brothers. After moving to England in 1965, they had a series of hit singles. Scott's solo work started with Scott in 1967. Starting in the 80s, his work took an increasingly avant-garde turn. » Read more

2019-03-20
Freedom to Spend Unearths June Chikuma's Archives – Jun (June) Chikuma is well known for her video game and anime soundtracks, but she also released an album of experimental electronic music back in 1986 called Divertimento where she indulged the kind of spontaneity that wouldn't work in a soundtrack. RVNG Int'l label Freedom to Spend is bringing this overlooked item to broader attention with a deluxe reissue. » Read more

2019-03-03
Seaprog 2019 Lineup Almost Complete – The Seaprog festival in Seattle is scheduled for June 7-9 this year, and they've announced their lineup of performers. The revitalized Trettioåriga Kriget will cap Friday night, perennial favorites Marbin are on Saturday, and District 97 will finish off the fest on Sunday night. In support, they've booked a stellar variety of artists from the Northwest and around the world, including EchoTest, Markus Reuter and Trey Gunn, and the live debut of the amazing Troot project. » Read more

2019-02-21
You Can Be Part of an Ambient Electronic Project – The Gesture of History is a new electronic project put together by Sam Rosenthal of Black Tape for a Blue Girl, Steve Roach, and violist Sam Shadow. The music started as an instrumental track Rosenthal was working on for a Black Tape album, but took on a life of its own and demanded further enhancements. The majority of the funds raised will go to manufacturing costs for LP and CD editions, as well as other items as detailed on the Kickstarter page. » Read more


Previously in Exposé...

Richard Pinhas - Rhizosphere / Live, Paris 1982 – At last, a reissue of Pinhas' first and certainly most purely electronic album recorded under his own name. It also marks a time when this was the distinction between Pinhas' solo material and...  (1994) » Read more



Listen & discover



Print issues