180 gram vinyl in gatefold. Recorded at his home studio in Denver Kael Smith’s Mute Forest is a blend of warm electronics and acoustic songs wrought with pained emotion. Deforestation vulnerability can easily be compared to the likes of Caught In The Wake of Forever, Benoit Pioulard, and Part Timer. Limited release on Lost Tribe Sound.
7/10 Clinton Staff review, 18 November 2015I have to admit it, I love trees. Tragically I’m the kind of person who writes to the council when one gets chopped down. Bastards, total bastards anyone who chops a tree down. For Kael Smith it wasn’t vile humans but humble beetles that rid him of his trees in his childhood home. After he returned from years away in the city he returned to find the trees decimated and along came this album. It’s a slow moving dream-like record which marries together clicking electronics, haunting atmospheres and sorry for themselves acoustic guitars with hushed, whispered vocals. It’s a moody, melancholic listen and not the type of album that is hoing to reveal itself on a cursory listen. It reminds me of a cross between It’s Immaterial’s vastly underrated ’Song’ album and the type of haunting electronics of The Album Leaf. Despite the varied sound, Smith’s vocals remain monotone and crestfallen. The picked acoustics and gloomy delivery of ‘Impersonating A Firefighter’ recall Dakota Suite and there’s gorgeous atmospheres on the picked instrumental bliss of ‘Vine Covered Windows and Doors’ The album also reminds me a lot of the shivering melancholy of Caught in the Wake Forever with a wider sound palette at hands. Closer ‘From God, to Kane, to Seth’ uses a delightful choral led vocal sample admits misty pianos to finish with a flourish. Despite it’s beauty it is unremittingly desperate and it’s overall unrelenting sadness is making me hover between a 7 and an 8 score as it has really made me totally miserable. Maybe Smith’s job is done. However, don't forget to file this alongside the recent Chris Tenz record for your winter gloom soundtrack.
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