Sunwølf – Beyond the Sun

The titles should give the nature of the music away; Morose Land, Solar, Inertia… redolent of the size and overbearing physicality of nature itself: of watching the world go by, of not bothering to waste words or gestures

 

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A massive, ponderous "slab" of a record, but a fine one nonetheless. The opening two tracks, Genesis and Solar are slow moving leviathans, drugged on their own sounds – we get a moment when a drum is given some welly in Solar, but it’s not for long.

The titles should give the nature of the music away; Morose Land, Solar, Inertia… redolent of the size and overbearing physicality of nature itself: of watching the world go by, of not bothering to waste words or gestures. Given the LP’s title maybe Sunwølf are contemplating a sort of blissed out space travel. Who knows? When we do get an increase in tempo, the band’s power is quite noticeable: Morose Land kicks off with a wall of guitar, but inevitably there’s a moment when the track pauses to take a lot around it, and normal service seems to be resumed with Beyond the Sun - a simple riff welded to an implacably morose beat.

It’s not wholly  fair to see the LP as a monumental sonic essay in lethargy, as the tracks are pretty short and Sunwølf have a gift of making very accessible songs behind this monilithic sound – there’s a melodic element to the guitar riffs and the sounds are pitched pretty high in the register which, given the overall weight of the music, makes for a crisp and clean listen that is very satisfying indeed.

Things wind down in a gentle manner… Inertia itself is a lovely meditation and when the kids voices float in to introduce Time Stands Still it’s a tremendous one: at this point the record really settles down into a kind of moog-driven bliss-out. Home is a sort of film soundtrack, albeit a very unassuming one.

It’s one of those unprepossessing records that sit in the corner patiently waiting their turn and, – when you play it – you realise it’s absolutely great.