The Hill, The Light, The Ghost SECRET NAME
Fifth album from Derbyshire post-rock trio.
While this ambiently inclined three-piece would probably stop short of calling this LP a concept album, there’s a distinct atmospheric thread running through its nine tracks that suggests a narrative arc.
There’s a drowsy, early morning feel to the opening tracks, from the twittering birdsong, gentle cello and sparse drops of echoing piano on Wide Awake through to the trickling piano and ticking clocks of Entering. The sound shapes up into neat loops of neo-classical keyboard figures and soft symphonic accompaniment on We Need These Beams, creating a misty, wistful soundscape. Distant melodica and gentle acoustic strums softly decorate All Watched Over By Machines Of Loving Grace, conjuring up summery vistas, while flickering half-beats crackle like campfires beneath Try Again And Again And Again.
The DIY, kitchen-sink sound of Haiku Salut’s early records has been streamlined into a more focused aesthetic, but what they’ve lost in ramshackle maverick charm, they’ve gained in immersive widescreen aesthetics, as evidenced on the balmlike beauty of closer All Clear, lulling us into the darkness just as gently as they whispered us awake.