RIYL: Brian Eno, Henry Flynt, Moondog, Popul Vuh, Sun Ra, Catherine Ribeiro + Alpes, Arthur Russell, Laurie Spiegel. The new album (his 6th) by the ever-evolving project of Jaime Fennelly is his most ambitious and spellbinding set of roiling, meditative recordings to date, and the first to supplement his foundational arsenal of Indian pedal harmonium, analog synthesizers, and incantatory voices with a full ensemble, including Janet Beveridge Bean (Eleventh Dream Day, Freakwater), Jim Becker (Califone, Iron & Wine), Haley Fohr (Circuit des Yeux, Jackie Lynn), and Jon Mueller (Death Blues). With prayerful patience and ceremonial gravity, these 7 extraordinary songs conjure and celebrate the cyclical rhythms of nature: tidal surges, human breathing, cicadas in the wilderness gloaming.
The record’s forty-five minutes uncannily subsume listeners within an enveloping sensation of primeval remoteness, the heady wonder and instinctual trepidation of sleeping alone beneath the stars. The immersive soundworld that saturates Undying Color elides the physical and the metaphysical. To wit, twelve-minute centerpiece “Gravity Wake,” commandingly sung by Haley Fohr (Circuit des Yeux, Jackie Lynn) and Janet Beveridge Bean (Eleventh Dream Day, Freakwater), is likely the eeriest and most sensual paean to Einstein’s theory of general relativity ever composed. And the album itself, following its punning title that substitutes “dying” for “dyeing,” is dedicated to Fennelly’s recently departed uncle, as if the transmutations of color into cloth analogize the potential transmutations of death into music.
With Undying Color, more bodies bring a corresponding increase in heat. While the project emerged in 2007 along a decidedly solo axis, following the dissolution of Fennelly’s prior group Peeesseye (with guitarist and fellow PoB artist Chris Forsyth and drummer/visual artist Fritz Welch), Mind Over Mirrors now resembles a band, or a constellation. In addition to the role Crain plays in making this Mind Over Mirrors’ most ambitious and spellbinding set of roiling, meditative recordings yet, Undying Color is also the first to supplement Fennelly’s foundational arsenal of Indian pedal harmonium and Oberheim synths with a full ensemble of players, including Jim Becker (fiddle; Califone, Iron and Wine) and Jon Mueller (drums, percussion; Death Blues, Volcano Choir). Undying Color also asserts the interwoven formal and folk aspects of Mind Over Mirrors more dramatically than ever before. This sense of simultaneity, of braided vernacular and academic musical traditions, recalls Henry Flynt’s fusion of Appalachian music with avant-garde tactics, aligning Fennelly with other iconoclastic American composers like Charles Ives and Moondog known for similarly syncretic methods.
140g virgin vinyl, heavy-duty matte board jacket, full-color printed inner sleeve. Includes MP3 Download Code.
A1. “Restore & Slip” 6:45
A2. “Gravity Wake” 11:50
A3. “Glossolaliac” 3:34
B1. “Gray Clearer” 6:27
B2. “Splintering” 6:02
B3. “To The Edges” 4:54
B4. “600 Miles Around” 4:52
Paradise Of Bachelors POB032LP