Tuesday, 8 July 2014

Slowness - How To Keep From Falling Off A Mountain

Last month saw the welcome return of San Francisco four-piece, Slowness. The group's second LP How To Keep From Falling Off A Mountain features studio credits for Monte Vallier (best known for production work with The Soft Moon & Weekend) and Kramer (Low & Galaxie 500) and sees a more conceptual approach to record making with the album split between a clutch of warmly crafted pop songs and a largely experimental suite of untitled tracks that evolve from the same psychedelic raga. 

Opening with the cosmic folk of Mountain, How To Keep From Falling... showcases the neo-60s shimmer that's come to define the work of founder members Julie Lynn and Geoffrey Scott. It's a template that works exquisitely and one typified by the melodious jangle of Division and the brilliant motorik daydream of Illuminate.

But not content with an orthodox opening trilogy, it's at this point that Slowness move into more explorative territory. Using the sunshine groove of Anon, Part I as a launch pad, the band loop a serene chant over infectious bass hooks to deliver a four minute trip of languid psych funk. Hot on its heels comes Part II, a sumptuous cut of otherworldly shoegaze, recalling Souvlaki era Slowdive; whilst the third and final quarters weave strands of hypnotic guitar into an intoxicating, brooding climax.

Happily, all four parts are reunited for album closer Anon (A Requiem in Four Parts), which segues its constituent quartet into an epic, eighteen-minute opus.

How To Keep From Falling Off A Mountain is available for download from Bandcamp. The band also has a presence on Facebook and an official website.

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