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Brocade

Landing

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Album Review

After eight years of work, Landing have turned into something of a free-flowing enterprise, where each album or release is almost like a new chapter in a book. It's something captured as well in their album artwork, as if they were snapshots in a continuing journey in some strange landscape. Key to all this working, though, is constantly fine music, and once again Landing deliver on the excellent Brocade. Now fully expanded to a quintet with the inclusion of Peter Baumann, on Brocade Landing balance out newer kinds of gentle tension in arrangements and performances while still maintaining the overall glow and glaze from their earliest days. Without being either the tasteful dead end of "post-rock" as it ended up or the dramatic-to-a-fault approach of Godspeed You Black Emperor! and their many descendants, the band's music here suggests stateliness and progress — consider the inspirational rise of the opening song, "Loft," where a crisp, clinical rhythm like a mutated Kraftwerk is matched with keyboard swells and intertwined, liquid guitar melodies. From there, Brocade continues in presenting songs that are soothing but never sappy, tinged with melancholia but never less than warm, and captivating in their own particular way. Adrienne Snow's understated vocals softly wend their occasional way through the mix — when she first appears on "Yon," the effect is downright subliminal — while "How to Be Clear" features Aaron Snow adding a distanced performance over a suddenly motoriked-up performance, featuring the guitars at their most blasting. The whole album is not of a piece, though, with "Spiral Arms" getting its emphasis and rhythm via the combination of guitar lines rather than drums, though bass softly underpins the song while finger cymbals add a further mysterious touch, while the beatless (but not arrhythmic) "Music for Three Synthesizers" is just that.

Biography

Formed: 1998 in Provo, UT

Genre: Alternative

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

Ambient drift rock band Landing were formed in 1998 by married couple Aaron and Adrienne Snow, two musicians who had met at Brigham Young University and moved to Connecticut after graduating. Starting out as a duo under the name May Landing, keyboardist Adrienne and guitarist Aaron were eventually joined by drummer/bassist Daron Gardner and guitarist/bassist Dick Baldwin, and later on by multi-instrumentalist Peter Baumann (often erroneously mistaken for the former Tangerine Dream member of the same...
Full Bio
Brocade, Landing
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