Lady's Mantle

by Jake Muir

sferic cruise the best coast with Jake Muir, an artist and field recordist hailing from Los Angeles, California, where he’s previously recorded and released albums under the Monadh moniker for Further Records and Touch, the latter of which on the compilation ‘Live At Human Resources’, where he took part in a beautiful group tribute to Jóhann Jóhannsson along with a number of solo contributions.

On ‘Lady’s Mantle’ Muir constructs a poignant sound world crafted from samples of well loved American pop smudged with aqueous field recordings made everywhere from Iceland to the beaches of California. In nine succinct scenes, the results loosely limn a wide sense of space and place with its fading harmonic auroras and glinting, half-heard surf rock melodies rendered in an abstract impressionist manner that suggests a fine tracing of in-between-spaces, perhaps describing metropolitan sprawl giving way to vast mountain ranges and oceanic scales.

In effect the album recalls the intoxicated airs of Jan Jeinek's Loop Finding Jazz Records and Gramm project, as well as Pinkcourtesyphone (a.k.a L.A. resident Richard Chartier) and Andrew Pekler’s sensorial soundscapes and even the plangent production techniques of Phil Spector. But for all its implied sense of space, ultimately there’s a paradoxically close intimacy to proceedings which feels like you’re the passenger in Muir’s ride, and he patently knows the scenic route...