Recently, I had a chance to post news about Now You Are Not Here, the latest effort by Abrasive Trees. For those who somehow missed my recent post about this interesting outlet, Abrasive Trees is a solo project of Matthew Rochford, a creative artist whose interests span across several complementary genres. Like on his previous recording, Rochford included musicians on particular compositions, but he remains a principal songwriter, composer, musician, and creative vehicle of Abrasive Trees in general. Since its inception, Abrasive Trees has published three extended plays like Bound For An Infinite Sea, Without Light, and Now You Are Not Here. The latest recording is also the first that ended up on both compact disc and 7″ vinyl record, while the previous two were published on compact discs only.
Now Your Are Not Here contains three profoundly detailed compositions that are defying classification into a particular genre. Several music genres are lurking around from scratch to finish, but it seems psychedelic rock is probably the most dominant one. Besides psychedelic rock, you may hear the elements of post-rock, goth rock, post-punk, cinematic ambient, drone, shoegaze, dream pop, and world music intervening between each other during the entire extended play. Still, psychedelic rock remains the primary musical orientation of Abrasive Trees that binds all the abovementioned elements together in slabs of polyphonic melodies, harmonies, drones, soundscapes, and other sonic delicacies. As soon as you press play, you’ll notice how each one of these ingredients is coming around and adding layer upon layer of pleasant notes.
The thing that blows my mind is the number of ideas invested in this material. Each composition hides very detailed soundscapes, calmy drones, sonic maneuvers, and various instrumentations provided by Rochford and a decent amount of guest musicians. Most of these orchestrations hide an entire specter of reverby, echoic, delayed tones that are building up a cathartic listening experience. Now You Are Not Here bursts with calmness, slowness, but you may also notice some weird energy. This particular energy serves as a perfect contrast to all the moderate orchestrations, which would be too much without this crucial detail. Matthew Rochford thought about everything enclosed within these three songs, and his songwriting/composing skills showcase a tremendous experience and sense of balance. Now You Are Not Here comes on very limited 7″ record, compact disc, but is also available on all streaming platforms. Pick up your preferred weapon of choice and enjoy the soothing melodies.