Sladerfluous Reviews: ‘Arrival’ by freezedream

- Posted September 30th, 2015 by

Get ready for the arrival of your next favorite album. :)

freezedream’s latest release ‘Arrival‘ is warm, contemplative, and cultured. Ambient-yet-challenging, transformative-yet-inviting; you need to listen to it, because you’re going to love it.

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Check out the exceptional track ‘One Last Sunrise’ below.

Now that you’re hooked, let’s jump into the album…

On freezedream’s ‘Arrival’ Bandcamp page, the core of the album’s genesis is revealed to be an expression of two years living in France: time spent absorbing culture and evolving on a personal level, the conflicting emotions of appreciating where you’ve come from but loving where you are, and the feeling of losing a dear friend upon returning to your home country.

‘Arrival’ (released via Perelandra Records) is a whimsical exploration of love, growth, connection, and loss that plays with your expectations and challenges the very idea of ambient music. ‘Arrival’ plays like an invitation carried in the wind: you can listen and be content with the surface of the breeze, but if you heed the call below the surface and follow that invitation into the unknown, it will take you to a place you never knew you wanted to go. ‘Arrival’ carries with it a myriad of depth to explore on repeat listens, inviting us to look beyond the surface at the whispers below, culminating in a rewarding audio experience beyond expectations.

Below is merely a snapshot of the journey ‘Arrival’ will take you on, but these five tracks highlight some of the more prominent themes within the album. Follow along the journey below:

‘Rez de Chausée’ loosely translated means “ground floor”; an appropriate place to start freezedream’s musical journey with calm, echoing chimes, gently throbbing synth tones, and faint tubular taps serving as a light percussion. An overwhelming sense of contemplative exploration resides within ‘Rez de Chausée’. The track accomplishes two very subtle subversions of note: one, it crafts a shallow slide with which it slips the listener slowly down toward the world of ‘Arrival’, and two, it sets an expectation of cool ambient music while laying the foundation for freezedream’s signature transitional style that miraculously directs us on new melodic paths with an incredibly gentle guiding hand.

‘The Earth’ takes the first significant step into a more defined, structured melody, playing off the established softness of ‘Arrival’ so far to offer a bold push into headstrong explorative themes. Confidence erupts from ‘The Earth’, conveying security through adventure into the unknown. ‘The Earth’ dips into a musical eclipse at the halfway point, seemingly recounting the travels of the first half of its own track with intriguing quality, before returning to the adventure once more.

‘Elka – 103’s background accoutrements of chirping birds and controlled snare rolls allow the jubilant synth melody the opportunity to flourish in minimalistic positivity. Echoing over itself as it flits and floats, the melody stands alone with prideful self-assuredness and delivers a kindhearted, introspective flow akin to recounting the first few days of an incredible trip knowing that only blue skies are ahead.

‘Cutting all the Cables’ comes in the last quarter of ‘Arrival’, and appropriately so, conveying a certain inevitability and acknowledging the looming notion that the journey’s end may be on the horizon. A fleeting whimsical melody competes against a growing militaristic percussion, solidifying a state of the dream meeting reality, and the desire to prolong the dream as long as possible. Everyone can relate to the feeling of something really good about to come to an end, and the pangs of hope that something or someone will arrive at the last minute to stretch that final moment for all that it’s worth. There is power in freezedream’s subtlety here, and it is as provocative as it is serene.

‘One Last Sunrise’ is the magnificent penultimate track on freezedream’s ‘Arrival’, and embraces the inevitability of ‘Cutting all the Cables’ by going so far as to include a female voice echoing the phrase “emptiness” in what becomes the singular and most powerful choice freezedream makes in the delivery of ‘Arrival’. To have a repeating voice reminding you, no, taunting you to feel loss in the face of the incredible journey you’ve just had, and a swelling culmination of the album’s instrumentals fighting to drown out that voice in the back of everyone’s head that wants you to feel unworthy, freezedream challenges you to drown out that voice for yourself and embrace the imperfection of our own journeys, and embrace the arrival of whatever life has in store for us.

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freezedream’s ‘Arrival’ underscores the cohesive possibilities within variety and the depth of scope within a concentrated exploration such as ‘Arrival’. You will leave the experience certain that you have touched all facets of freezedream’s travels to another world, and before you know it, you’ll return home with a tinge of want for the world you’ve left behind. Don’t fret, because your newfound memories are only a ‘play’ away…

‘Arrival’ by Freezedream comes highly recommended and is available now to download on Bandcamp for $10 AUD, or you can purchase a very limited run physical copy for $12 AUD.

PixelRecall ~ (R. Morgan Slade) ~ Support the artists you love

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