It is fair to say that Dutch label Field Records had a pretty damn sparkling year. Their history of releasing limited runs of techno various artist EPs demonstrated solid form, however 2015 saw a refocussing. Concentrating on dedicated artist releases, the start of the year saw a trio of hot albums from L’estasi Dell’oro, Dard Å Ranj Från Det Hebbershålska Samfundet – or D.Å.R.F.D.H.S. – and Kartei. Then, bookending the year with releases, was a trio of shorter EPs from Staffan Linzatti, Szare and this, the final entry from D.Å.R.F.D.H.S. member Michel Isorinne, which just slips into 2016’s calendar.
Where the D.Å.R.F.D.H.S. album erred on the side of soundtracks for fans of rainy days and drizzle, Recollections Of Forgotten Dreams is the perfect Alka-Seltzer for those experiencing a tender New Year. There is something about the opener – which combines a morning chorus, an intense downpour and a crackling log fire – that whisks you away from urban surroundings, as if you’ve stepped through a wardrobe of C. S. Lewis’ invention into a picture postcard country cottage. The shoulders drop and stresses melt away as clock chime piano chords usher away the intensity of the storm.
After this scene is set, the best tracks hearken back to the early Artificial Intelligence days of Warp, where artists such as Autechre and Plaid shone their brightest before the breaking down of technological barriers caused them to lose their way. Set to analogue hiss and the chirp of a far off cosmic relay, ‘Reality Is What You Can Get Away With‘ reverentially walks a bass and treble string melody to the simplest shuffle of open and closed hi-hat.
There is the grace and gravitas of something wise beyond years, which would measure our fleeting existences as the tick of a second hand. Taking equal plaudits, ‘Without Tears‘ is a more sombre experience. The frenzied activity of a rainforest is heard from the perspective of deep inside a tiled building, resonant but distant, with every musical element hushed underneath a prominent four note melody.
Surrounding this are the remaining tracks ‘Whereabouts Unknown‘ and ‘Terrestrial Measure‘, which are quite unresolved in nature. The former is the negative to wedding bells, cascading with uncertainty rather than celebration, where the latter is the setting of the sun on your illusory cottage, all landscape replaced with darkness but for the flicker of distant city lights and the swirling pinprick canvas above.
A great deal of emotion is conveyed in such a condensed format; you are never short changed but are left with a taste on your tongue that longs for more. Here, the logical position would be to queue up the three distinct movements of this special trio, because we must not forget the path laid behind us. Indeed, ‘Recollections Of Forgotten Dreams’ serves as a dignified finale to an understated success.
Recollections Of Forgotten Dreams is out now on Field Records, order a copy form Delsin.
A1. Blurred Perceptions of Substance
A2. Reality Is What You Can Get Away With
A3. Whereabouts Unknown
B1. Without Tears
B2. Terrestrial Measure