Marc Byrd and Andrew Thomson have been making music as Hammock since the early aughts, and their latest album, Mysterium, is a pivot from previous releases, as they forgo much of the lyrics and percussion in favor of evoking deep emotions purely through soundscapes. And they execute their intent perfectly: "Not to be arrogant, but just as far as the music and the expression, it was exactly what it needed to be," says Byrd, and we couldn't agree more. Dedicated to Byrd's sister (her son/Byrd's nephew passed away during the recording of the album), the ambient pads, shoegazing guitar, ethereal strings, and heavenly choral elements make up the soothing melodies and progressions that encapsulate your headspace through the hour-plus listening journey. Gentle and soothing, for sure, but there is a sense of bittersweetness running throughout the 11-tracker, and that profound clash is what makes Mysterium such a stunning headphone trip (yes, headphone listening recommended). Check out: "Now and Not Yet," "Things of Beauty Burn," "This Is Not Enough (Epilogue)," and the title track.
- 180g pressing
- music label: Hammock Music 2017
reviewed by nakaveli 10/2017