Painted Girl - Familiar Trees of the North West
Familiar Trees of the North West
May 22, 2022
Bright and airy piano keys play out a thoughtful sequence as the track begins. A harmonic hardness mixed with warm undertones begin to settle on the vista in front of the listener. Sweet and saccharine are the words used by the artist behind Nonlocal Forecast, Angel Marcloid. Blending that glittery, starlight feeling with notions of new-age and jazz fusion was the intention. This feeling is certainly supported by the cymbal-heavy percussion that begins to play, spraying sparkling dissonance as drums burst in a dramatic blend of syncopated hits.
There is a real feeling of repose enshrined in the track. A comfort found in the simplicity of the main piano line, it certainly feels like it could be the moment on the forthcoming album in which the artist allows themselves the chance to delight in a meaningful and even soppy sensibility. As we find ourselves at the top of a sudden precipice, we dive off with a dreamlike slowness. Only to be picked up as a gorgeous analogue synth tone pushes through the cloud. It takes the narrative of the song in its stride and begins to soar with it, cavorting around the expanse made available by the sparsely layered instrumentation. The stunning effervescence achieved through the lead synth is reminiscent of the more euphoric tracks from the Canterbury scene of the mid-70s. Songs like Hatfield and the North’s Didn’t Matter Anyway spring to mind. But whereas that particular example wallows in an earthly feeling, Nonlocal Forecast shoots towards the aether.
The two melodic parts continue to play off of each other. The comforting jazz keys consistently providing a cushioning feeling of safety and security, allowing the synth to glide at some points and fall into wild improvisational solo-ing at others. Towards the end, the two join together in a beautiful, crystalline fusion as we are pushed even further above the clouds, Nonlocal Forecast providing that feeling of completeness, of absolute spiritual quenching. The artist lays the instrumentation down to rest, as thundering tom drums reinstate the glorious and sublime feeling that the track emitted from its start.
This beautiful breakout solo is provided by Kyle Jameson. Angel and Kyle became acquainted through KJC Muzique, a youtube channel the collaborator uses to post their sizeable collection of progressive jazz and new-age music, a lot of which is largely undocumented and hard to find. ‘His channel sustained me’, Angel says of KJC Muzique’s output. The song itself seems to represent a perfect symbiosis of the two new-age fans. Angel reiterates multiple times that they do not know each other in any way other than an exchange of emails and songs. But in this track, what we hear is unmistakably the sound of two spirits flying together and at points coalescing. Of the collaboration, Angel states ‘I could not be happier with it. Every time I listen to it I am just filled with joy. Kyle is such a beautiful person so it really makes the song extra special. This song is a dedication to him. Please listen to his music. It is magical.’ (Kyle’s music can be found here). The song is an affirmation of togetherness, a shirking of the overstated realm of physicality for a more fulfilling spiritual bond.
This also feeds into the inspiration behind the name of the track. Angel was inspired by the Holographic Principle, which in short, is a theoretical understanding of the world we live in as being a 2D surface. Moreover, that volume (the universe we perceive around us) is merely mimicking what is inscribed on the flat surface of existence. The theory was first presented by Gerard ‘t Hooft and has since been refined by scientists such as Leonard Susskind.
There is certainly a feeling of some illusive holography around this excerpt from Nonlocal Forecast‘s forthcoming album. The saccharine sound of the keys and percussion giving off a warmth so wholesome and emotive that it almost feels synthetic. But in the lead synth we witness something so real and corporeal soar from the surface of the instrumentation. The track is a beautiful melding of glistening midi-keys and a divine analogue performance.
Nonlocal Forecast‘s Holographic Universe(s?)! will be released via Hausu Mountain on the 30th of October.