Still Corners – Creatures Of An Hour (October 11, 2011)
If we go on a short excursion into the history of world music in order to find the roots of dream-pop, we have 99% chance of following all the strings right till The Velvet Underground’s Sunday Morning. Being one of the most obviously dream-pop band, Still Corners should be ready for the critics and audience to recall Velvet’s mentioned songs when talking about them. That can go on for several years yet, because Sunday Morning is one of the first songs in the genre and it pops into your head the very first time you hear Still Corners music.
I’m no critic and no demanded reporter and am writing now as someone interested in band’s music. The fact that it’s a challenge to find news or some solid information about this very interesting and unique London-based band on the internet doesn’t keep me from writing about them anyway, for they are yet considered to be beginners. No matter how much they’re influenced by the 60s music, their songs have that breath of modern age and that makes them a subject of comparison. Band’s dreamy melodies, sometimes soothing, sometimes way too depressive, with same foggy feeling left after nearly all of their songs, – all combined together they a bit remind of other existing dream pop bands.
Band’s history starts in 2007 with two founding members, vocalist Tessa Murray and multi-instrumentalist and producer Greg Hughes. Bands main achievement after years of working is their first long-play record, Creatures Of An Hour, released through Sub Pop record label. Band line-up also includes two other members who join them for live sessions.
Album’s first song gives an impression about the whole record, because no matter how much we go through it, we’ll still end up concluding that album’s trump card are Tessa’s dreamy vocals and overwhelming synths with their effects and all, soft basses going through the music as if telling us that songs were written for a special purpose: to make time-travel possible and take us back for several decades, that is. Anyway, the impression from album’s opening song Cuckoo, released as a single on June 28 of 2011 with one of album’s best tracks, Endless Summer, as a b-side, is overall exactly about time-travel especially from the following lines: Stuck in a time machine, it was just a dream.
If we summarize and talk about the lyrics beforehand, we’ll need to mention that they’re full of phrases much like the one cited above – short, simple and clear. After Cuckoo’s calming and minimalistic music, Circulars sound a little out of blue because despite its music is in dame genre in general, but also has some alerting elements much like thriller movies building up the suspense. If it sounds just like that for you and seems strange, then you should know that band has even more strange songs for you: just listen to their previous recordings, say, Clockwork or Parallels from Remember Pepper.
If you’re listening close enough, you’ll hear elements resembling 60s-70s music as well as some post-punk on the line. I Wrote In Blood is one of those strange songs, with what feels like one-note sounds softened by the bass in the middle of the track.
Endless Summer was released way before the album came out and its music video was shot only this year, on February 16.
Into The Trees is the relatively new song off the album with quite a fitting music video – in same mood, colors and revolving around the same topic, it seems. That’s probably one of the most rhythmic songs from the album.
The uniqueness and originality of Deamons its in guitar’s simple and clearly hearable sounds with only vocals blending with it.
Let’s get back to band’s older songs, Cremona this time. It’s my favorite, to be honest, and one of album’s closing tracks, Velveteen, is clearly under its influence. Repeated notes in song’s mid-section, repeated bass, rhythms, strange percussions.
And Submarine is a surprise in itself: those kinds of rhythms and drums are specific to old post-punk bands and modern noise-rock ones.
With all this in mind, band’s sound won’t change much from the current one, and that will be more than an advantage for the band, for it would surely be a big loss to be left without such a band with such a sound.