Friday 19 October 2012

Message to Bears - Wake Me

Previously, I mentioned how I have changed some of the ways that I look for or discover new music. One of them was: "A friend on Facebook is in a band of his own, and mentioned the other bands he is sharing a gig with". That is exactly how I heard this song for the first time.

Outrageously, I don't even remember which friend it was that led to me arriving at Message To Bears' website. I recall reading a list of bands playing at one particular gig and, of the bunch that were mentioned, it was definitely the music of Message to Bears that seemed to stand out and, in particular, this track.

The song begins with the sounds of a woodland: birds singing, a stream bubbling away, and it is almost as if you can hear sunlight coming through the treetops. An acoustic guitar is quick to join in with a slow and gentle series of notes. As the tune continues, the pace picks up a little with further instruments joining in, some simple vocals build the sound, and we soon find ourselves at the crescendo. And then everything suddenly falls away and we are left with the guitar occasionally providing a note, a cello carrying us through, and the final "aaaahs" of the vocal line.

Some songs follow a similar progressive pattern to this one, and yet end up with the listener feeling like they haven't really experienced anything - as though it has just been pieced together with little creativity at all; more of a block-by-block approach to music. Jerome Alexander (the multi-instrumentalist behind Message to Bears) has avoided this and, whilst the tune does seem to pass you by almost without realising it, you do reach an ending that leaves you feeling content and satisfied. For me, the biggest surprise was that the woodland sounds continue throughout almost all of the track, when I was expecting them to just act as an introduction and soon fade away.

As the title perhaps alludes to, Wake Me is the perfect soundtrack to starting a day... albeit the kind of day when you have no job to do, and are perhaps vacationing in some idyllic log cabin at a forest's edge. Regardless, it should serve to calm even the most frantic of minds.

"The function of music is the release us from the tyranny of concious thought"

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