Quiet Evenings: Impressions

Winterville, Georgia couple Grant and Rachel Evans—aka Nova Scotian Arms and Motion Sickness Of Time Travel, respectively—pool their considerable talents for this superb vinyl effort for Aguirre Records. Since 2009, the two have issued an almost mind-boggling number of releases as artists, individually and collectively (many of them on their Hooker Vision label). Impressions finds them operating in peak form, the music flowing out of them as naturally as the air they breathe, and taking them (and us) into the far reaches of space with little more than guitars and synthesizers as fuel. The disc (a limited edition of 200 copies) presents two long-form travelogues sure to satisfy astral travelers everywhere.

“Blue Dream” blossoms from delicate synthetic beginnings into full-flowered fluorescence until a peaceful pause sets in twelve minutes into the ride, six-string shadings now audible amidst the burbling synthetic backdrop. Anything remotely guitar-like soon vanishes within an all-enveloping haze, however, when the shuttle resumes its normal cruising speed. The B-side's “Telepathic Heart” opts for a more ruminative approach, with querulous phrases uttered atop a radiant base of synthetic streams and sputter. Though it doesn't exemplify the kinetic motion of the side A setting, “Telepathic Heart” isn't short on energy; it's just that the activity level is semi-contained, kept on a shorter leash, and as a result tension is intensified.

What makes Impressions so appealing is its unpredictability and its refusal to settle into a single mode, be it ambient or drone. One never knows exactly where the trip will lead, though one knows that with Grant and Rachel at the controls the ride will be nothing short of dazzling.

March 2013