Drape: Dream Words
Gears of Sand

An aptly chosen title if ever there was one, Dream Words is the latest production by Seattle duo Ryan Gracey and Spencer Williams under the Drape name. The pair craft their deep ambient dronescapes with great attention to detail and occasionally pepper them with a field recording or two.

Outdoors noises and long, flowing waves of windswept tones establish the recording's overall style in the opener “Cosmic Juices” and the seven subsequent pieces follow its lead thereafter. The church-like meditation “The Pillar and the Post,” where a plaintive piano melody intones beneath layers of gleaming tones, finds Drape sculpting sound with the kind of sensitivity and nuance one associates with Stars of the Lid. The apparent sound of waves quietly lapping deepens the soothing character of “As Concrete As Possible,” while the intensity heats up dramatically when “Words Dream” threatens to explode but Gracey and Williams bring the same delicate control to it as they do everywhere else. Brooding dreamscapes of swirling synthetics and shimmering chords also appear (“Northwest Division,” “Goldenmouth”), as does a beatific setting of ambient drift (“A Postscript”).

Each crepuscular piece flows into the next, making Dream Words a forty-four-minute journey of subtly contrasting moods. In truth, you won't hear much that you haven't heard before, but what you will hear is expertly crafted and certainly won't disappoint anyone with an appetite for rich ambient soundscaping.

May 2010