Wednesday, August 13, 2014

CASSETTE REVIEW: Summer Night Air “4” (Cruel Nature Records)

                What I enjoy about “4” instantly is that it lives up to the name of the artist, as the music found on this cassette is smooth and cool.   Granted, the level of “cool” depends upon where you live exactly, but we can at least agree that the lack of sunlight can make nights feel cooler.

                Summer Night Air starts off with beeping tones that remind me of a hospital based television series.   These tones pick up, and then expand upon each other into loops.    It embraces a midi sort of sound, which is kind of like elevator music but not because that generally tends to sound bad, so I like to think of this as being elevator pop.    In ways, the drum machines can even remind me of an instrumental version of Owl City, as this is overall just pleasant to say the least.

                On the second side we enter territory of FNL, which is somewhat different from the first half.   It’s that ambient and quieter feel, but then at one point it seemingly ends.  I’m wondering why there would be so much blank space left at the end of the cassette, but am also considering the non-symmetrical ideas behind it and then it comes back again as if it was never gone.

                While I cannot place the movie exactly, this cassette does remind me of someone who has been down and defeated but remains positive.   There is a specific scene that exists within the last few moments of this cassette and I can visualize it so clearly in my mind but don’t actually even remember it ever being in a movie.  

                It would begin with the hero taking a fall, some sort of setback or physical blow that would seemingly put him out of action, let’s say over the edge of a cliff for the purposes of simplicity.   And the narrator (who might even be the main character) would say something, “And, now, on this fateful, it is that our reluctant hero would finally see his demise”, and it’d get all sad, and there’d be a dramatic pause and then the narration would say, “But no, not today!  Some other day!” and show that the hero was still hanging on over the side of the cliff somehow.

                For all of the emotions of positivity you can take from that idea of hitting rock bottom and pulling yourself back up and refusing to quit, that is how this cassette by Summer Night Air makes me feel and it does so in such a relaxing way that it is rather marvelous. 

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