by Carly Schorman
The new LP from Wayward Sun awakens gently, but you astute listeners will begin to note that there seems to be a slight disquiet just beneath the gentle moving aural waves of Casual Stoicism.
The dreamy atmosphere that pervades the album has moments of tension, but never without peaceable resolve. That might be the effect of the stoicism that the album is titled for; and, for those that need a refresher, stoicism means indifference to or quiet acceptance of suffering.
When seen in that light, Casual Stoicism seems like a slow revelation of self and there is an innocence, a tender beauty, that overrides any of the darker sentiments in this ambient soup of sound.
But the coexistence of both parts is what creates the compelling narrative of Casual Stoicism. If you’re not familiar with the work of Scott Mitting, aka Wayward Sun, you’re maybe not that well connected in the Phoenix music scene or maybe you missed the unassuming guy standing at the back of some the Valley’s more boisterous acts (see Militia Joan Hart and 20 Ft Neon Jesus, amongst others). Either way, get in the know with Casual Stoicism from Wayward Sun.
The Phoenix-based electronica producer who operates under the name Soapcheese partnered up with Amsterdam’s Magical Trash for a cross-continental split release.
“Prototype Arms” comes to us from that cassette which was released on the Portland label, SunHypnotic. This “non-linear electro phonetic” production runs around five minutes, but there is a vast and ever changing landscape of strange sounds and interesting aural textures. The experimental definitely outweighs the ambient on this one, but there is a dreaminess to the underlying motion on this single that emerges more as you continue to listen.
Check out “Prototype Arms” by Soapcheese below or head here to score the Soapcheese / Magical Trash Split from SunHypnotic before they sell out… like any minute now… seriously.
While listening to Hill and Berg Era, the new release from Waytansea Point, I felt I was listening to the soundtrack to a really smart indie flick. And, like, the entire soundtrack, complete with non-musical interludes.
There is a very visual element in the soundscapes that make up this collection as well as an emotional texturing that moves with a cinematic pacing. I guess it should be no surprise then that Mitchell Kearney, the creator behind Waytansea Point, is a visual artist as well as a musician.
Certain moments are tense (see “Roscoe Piano”) while others have a sort of mundane beauty that feel like a moment plucked from your morning commute or, perhaps, that afternoon second wind that carries us through our final compulsory actions before the close of the workday. Score your own cassette copy of Hill and Berg Era from Waytansea Point here.