Joel Nathaniel Pike - aka Tiny Leaves - creates music that evokes rural, open landscapes, without ever becoming kitsch or pastoral. That he himself says he dreams of living in the hills shows simply that he is an artist who has a deep emotional attachment with all of his creations, arguably the key to producing such emotive and undeniably warm ambient compositions as those contained within his EP 'What We Dream Of'.
Realised from open-form, experimental writing sessions that were recorded in their entirety, 'What We Dreamed Of' is described by Pike as a "snapshot of hope", with the tracks' own emergence from mere recorded improvisations into fully-fledged pieces appearing as microcosms of Pike's own "time of change"in his life, wherein long-held ambitions started to come to fruition. The process of discovery inherent in Pike's compositional methodology is in fact recognised and given space on the release, with tracks such as 'Hope Awakening''s background ambience being almost entirely constituted of looped anomalies such as pedal clicks and bow contact noises. Yet at no point do any of the tracks fall into an inventive 'rut' or mere abstract sound; Pike's guitar setup, within which only one side of the stereo output which is heavily processed, allowed Pike to retain melodic spontaneity in his improvisations, without ever having to abruptly disturb the layers of processing that make this release so sonically rich - and as such has lead to a set of compositions that feature a mixture of both fantastic, spontaneous improvisation and rich, seemingly orchestrated sounds; a mixture that is almost impossible to recreate, and ever-fascinating to listen to.
Featuring remixes from ambient veterans Zvuku and Message to Bears, which blend so seamlessly with the release overall as to act almost as beautiful photo negatives of the original tracks, ‘What We Dream Of’ is an EP of wistful escape - and a fantastically ample taste of what Pike has to offer in his upcoming full-length album.
released October 15, 2012
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