THE WEEVER SANDS: Stylobat’s Travels (release date November 8, 2020)

The Relentless Search for Progressive Perfection

Working to Join Both Sides of the Brain

I have the pleasure and privilege of having access to an advance copy of this challenging, impressive release from The Weever Sands.

THE WEEVER SANDS?

Think intellect. Michael Oldfield. Post-Rock. Post-Progressive. Minimalism. Purity. Egoless-ness. Pristine intentions unruffled by greed and suspicious of swerving into wankery.

The Weever Sands then is a meticulously plotted and foot-noted project developed by German musician-theorist Jens-Peter Gaul with some help from a few friends and collaborators. Like Geo Schaller– ex-GUANO APES producer (on flute), and speed-metal axe-man Armin Rave (!), who you’ll hear soaring midway through the epic title track.

Armin meditates

STYLOBAT’S TRAVELS

This album follows The Weever Sands‘ debut release, “Keep Your Face Turned to the Light”.

The cover art- that of an adventurous, rakish rodent-figure in an exotic locale, being watched by an intrigued female of the species- gives signals about the upcoming music and “concept”, while giving a nod to the long tradition of animals in progressive music.

There are four tracks.

  1. Intro- The Breakout Session: In this album opener, we hear the few “lyrics”, which are actually spoken words introducing and setting the stage of operations. A vigorous musical tapestry unfolds after a rather simple opening line.
  2. And Aprodite Took the Veil: from here on, the music follows its mandate- to be as pure, focused on development, clarity, and enjoyment without unnecessary encumbrance. Starting with a repeated note on keyboard, the music develops with additions of increasing complexity, layers of sound.
  3. Stylobat’s Travels: The use of some sound effects draws in the listener, with the most delicate of cymbal clicks and rings, eerie keyboard lines, and the beeping of some indeterminate medical device? And did I say that it develops into a twenty-five minute journey- some perky jazzy riffs, some innocent electronica forms, multiple layers of keyboard and drum sounds.
  4. Acropolis (The Big Wave): But NOT a concept album as such- more of the right brain and left brain needing to intersect. Here the music as always unfolds simply, then with added textures- some synthesized handclaps, held mystic tones on the keyboard, thumping synthesized bass…and some wildly adventurous synthesizer lead playing.

And Let’s Just Pause

Normally in a review I will post samples, or even the entire album- but it’s not really released yet. So here’s what I’ve got:

The “pause” is an acknowledgment that while almost ALL progressive music is both cerebral and carnal, the clearly stated aims of The Weaver Sands precludes a whole lot of foofaraw.

No, what you need to do is wait, find the album, and give it a few spins. It’s well worth your time.

THE WEEVER SANDS links: Spotify- https://open.spotify.com/album/5KDJgqmJhsWKmR5kKgqZKt?fbclid=IwAR1td5JxRJrzs4B9FUF87Z_DKBb6ZdnEmuHq6CmMBv6OWGinkKGItYaZyjg, Bandcamp- https://theweeversands.bandcamp.com/, website- http://www.the-weever-sands.com/

Progressive Rock Fanatics Facebook page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/595398647223538/?multi_permalinks=1413972172032844&notif_t=like&notif_id=1503396208171776

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