Proving it's both a marathon and a sprint, drone artist Sarah Davachi puts out yet another record. Hot off the heels of the impressive baroque tone poem Let Night Come On Bells End the Day, Davachi makes the hop to Ba Da Bing! for a record of lonely, isolationist ambient music that reflects the upheaval in her life. Principally a master and architect of synthesizers, Davachi's output has expanded into scores for a wide range of instrumentation, so we'll just wait and see how this likely-to-be opus turns out.
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The terrifyingly busy schedule of Sarah Davachi seems to know no end. As long as there’s an ambient label who considers it their turn to release your music, you’ll be stuck making it forever, and this month it’s Ba Da Bing!’s turn. Following on from an immense springtime record in Let Night Come On Bells End The Day, released for Sean McCann’s Recital Program, Davachi has skipped a season and come out with a record that will surely sooth us through autumn. ‘Gave In Rest’ is another stunning achievement, something I’m beginning to tire of saying about this modern experimental legend.
On ‘Gave In Rest’, the sustained music that has marked Davachi’s output thus far gets a shocking mutation. This record starts with new silences and mysteries, introducing an unprecedented set of punctuation marks as Davachi experiments with dissolving and disappearing her music. The instrumentation sounds acoustic in timbre, though it was manipulated through tape delays; much of it happens upon a piano and investigates just intonation, a contemporary musical practice predominantly innovated in the West by composer Terry Riley. The first track is perhaps the most dramatic attempt at trying something new, though: in the cut up slices of “Auster”, Davachi announces something new, creating statement in the voids.
The lightly screeching resonances of “Matins” are sublime, and are captured, alongside harmonic plucks, with more typical droning sustains. As always, I’m finding I have a new favourite piece of Davachi music with every record, and this is it: it is some of the best vertical interaction I’ve heard her music make. “Gloaming” offers a set of piano notes arranged like clusters, rotating in what feels like but probably isn’t a cyclical motion. These moments feel new, for Davachi, steps into compositional styles we’ve yet to hear from her. It's a blessing that we get to have her experiments as our own personal soundtracks.
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