Nature in Nature – Simon McCorry (reviewed by Dave Franklin)

I’m not saying that he makes a conscious effort to do so but Simon McCorry’s music does raise the question of where the border lies between music and what lies beyond. Of course, there is no real answer to that and Nature in Nature is as musical and relevant…perhaps even more so, than the pop pap that we find clogging up the charts. Mere song, this is not. It is far more interesting and thought-provoking than that.

Wandering fluidly between modern classical, minimalist electronica, drone and ambient soundscapes, the music often feels like the ebbing and flowing of sonic waves, a gentle drift of hypnotic sound, ever-changing yet always familiar. Background Thermal Radiation is the sound of a symphony being conducted by scientific instruments; drones and blips, waves and gentle chaos, sometimes conforming, sometimes colliding. The title track grows from washes of musical intrigue towards a more weighty, beat-driven crescendo. Though the word crescendo is obviously relative given the understatement that the music is built on.

Prometheus is a return to the long, drawn-out sounds of the opener, smooth ye somehow metallic, claustrophobic and beguiling and Entanglement rounds things off nicely, a strange and hypnotic piece which speaks of quantum interactions, far-flung worlds and the unseen acts of the universe taking place beyond our sight and even our understanding.

Nature in Nature is a wonderful mix of thought and feeling, of seeing how far you can push the musical form, where the lines of demarcation lie and what happens when you step over them. As unexpected as it is appealing. But just remember, before you can open your ears you have to open your mind.

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