The JangleBox

Indie, Noise, Shoegaze… Music

AM Songs – AIR FORMATION: Near Miss (Club AC30, 2018)

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“After 2015’s triumphant return with the ‘Were We Ever Here’ EP, Brighton shoegaze luminaries Air Formation, are set to release their fifth long-player ‘Near Miss’, on March 9th via the Club AC30 label.
‘Were We Ever Here’ marked Air Formation’s return following their split in 2010 and was comprised mostly around the songs written prior. ‘Near Miss’ is the first album of entirely new material the band have written and released in seven years.
The album was recorded and mixed by Pat Collier (The House of Love, Primal Scream, Jesus and Mary Chain) in just two days. The band set about expanding on earlier sounds by creating an album that is rawer than previous efforts and explores the likes of post-rock (Clouds of Orion), free-form improvised space-rock (Formation 4) and three minute sonic assaults (Vanishing Act), together with the uplifting melancholia Air Formation are known for.
“Sometimes you wish you could just disappear…” guitarist and frontman Matt Bartram tells us, “be free of any responsibility, show your true emotions without consequence, go back to the way you were in those rose tinted days gone by…. ‘Vanishing Act’ is that voice inside your head telling you can do that. The increased tempo of the middle section reflects the rush of euphoria before reality hits and it all comes crashing down again” (Club AC30)

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8 mayo, 2018 Posted by | Air Formation | Deja un comentario

Air Formation: Nothing to wish for (nothing to lose), Club Ac30 (2010)

Air Formation es una agrupación británica que lleva ya bastante tiempo facturando un Dream-Pop de alto quilataje emocional, recubriéndolo de una densa capa de teclados y guitarras que los acercan al Shoegaze más formal, algo así como lo que algunos llaman Shoegaze de segunda generación. Semejante a lo que elaboran, por ejemplo, Engineers. La diferencia es que este Nothing to wish for (Nothing to lose) es un disco quizás demasiado encorsetado, con unos cánones demasiado rígidos; la producción de su disco, a cargo de Pat Collier es ejemplar, no hay un acorde más alto que otro ni una distorsión más corrosiva que otra. Echamos en falta quizás algo más de improvisación y de sentimiento más directo, algo más de actitud subversiva ante la música. Ésto no quiere decir nada, porque seguro que habrá un millar de personas que disientan con nuestra opinión, y además, Nothing to wish for (nothing to lose) contiene temas que son impecables ejercicios del Shoegaze más preciosista: Stars and knives, Distant silhouettes, tremendo parecido con Ride de la primera época, Low december sun… Interesante.

Air Formation – Nothing to wish for (nothing to lose)

“Having spent a decade steadily crafting their sepia-tinged, reverb-infused shoegaze laced signatures, Brighton’s Air Formation have become experts in a predictably saturated field. 2007’s Daylight Storms, one of that year’s most understated records, remains their definitive statement. Not so much a lesson in grandiosity, Daylight Storms could well have served Air Formation as a fitting epitaph should they have decided to call it a day soon after. Having disappeared out of the spotlight for so long since, and with Matt Bartram’s blossoming career as a solo artist, the lingering suspicion was that maybe they had. Nevertheless, having been locked in the studio for the biggest part of last year, again with esteemed producer Pat Collier who’d previously worked on the band’s 57 Octaves Below EP in 2005, it was almost inevitable that the five-piece would return with something similarly as daring and enterprising. Last November’s Reverence show with Chapterhouse provided a sneak preview of what to expect, their set drawing entirely from the then unreleased material that would go on to comprise Nothing To Wish For (Nothing To Lose). However, having since listened to the album on many occasions, having lived with it for the past couple of months, it’s plain to see that their choice of songs aired at that show was something of a red herring, the upbeat nature of the set largely usurped by its more introspective, drawn-out brethren on record. That’s not to say Nothing To Wish For… is disappointing as a result; on the contrary: its polished sheen and coarse lucidity further emphasise its creators’ lofty position as homegrown forerunners of the current scene of self-celebration. The only detriment – if you can call it that – is that whatever they were likely to do after Daylight Storms was always going to find itself compared to such a striking record, and although the onus was on Air Formation to go one better, the odds on improving upon something as near-perfect as Nothing To Wish For…’s predecessor were always going to be long in the tooth. Across Nothing To Wish For…’s 11 pieces there are still plenty of moments that highlight just why Air Formation are held in such regard within their own genre. The smooth orchestral landing that follows the guitar-heavy intro to opener ‘Three Years Pass’ and Cure-like dark pop of ‘Stars & Knives’ both stand out as two of the band’s most delectable compositions to date. ‘Meltdown’ meanwhile is very similar in structure to Daylight Storms standout ‘Adrift’, its tribal drums offering to pick up where Ride left off on ‘Dreams Burn Down’ when whimsy seemed a more saleable option. Alternatively, the patient build-up of ‘Until Today’ and maudlin envelop of ‘Outro’ possibly hints at Air Formation’s future intentions as more plaintive orators of shoegaze’s often fantasy orientated veneer, the former eerily reminiscent of Bauhaus’ ‘Hollow Hills’ to boot. What is starkly recognisable, Matt Bartram’s largely whispered vocal delivery apart, comes courtesy of Air Formation’s unerring quest to make music as disturbingly uncommercial and disproportionate as possible without diluting their sound or integrity, and even though Nothing To Wish For (Nothing To Lose) is unlikely to challenge Glee’s domination of the album charts any time soon, it’s a welcome – if customary – return for one of the nation’s most consistent outfits” (drownedinsound.com)

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17 marzo, 2010 Posted by | Air Formation | 1 comentario

   

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