After the series of singles launched in 2019 and three excellent full-length releases such as a debut self-titled album, Divine Invasions, and A Human Being Is The Best Disguise, Cardiff-based duo Ritual Cloak returns with another outstanding composition. Shell is their second single this year, which serves as an appropriate continuation of their previous recordings. However, it seems that Shell carries even more sonic delicacies, showcased through calm, relaxing, soothing ambiances, melodies, harmonies, various enhancements, accentuations, and all other details that define the best numbers in the genre. Speaking of genres, Ritual Cloak is a unique post-rock duo that differs from other contemporaries. They also gravitate towards ambient, drone, neo-classical, cinematic, alt-pop, and electronic music, and Shell is the perfect example of these elements assembled in a fine piece of sonic artistry.
Shell has a very pleasant, relaxing, and longevous first segment where the duo solely focuses on vocal parts and ambiance. This segment excludes any rhythmic sequences and may sound like a prelude to some listeners. However, if you delve deep under the surface, you’ll discover layers of autotuned vocals, soothing piano melodies, and heavy basslines. The claps and delicate kick drums direct the rhythmic support or the second segment and perfectly match the remainder of the instrumentations. It may still sound minimalistic, but Ritual Cloak incorporated many details into this number, and you’ll notice all of them if you pay close attention. Shell is a complex ambient/post-rock composition with some of the finest properties of pop, usually showcased through outstanding vocal performance. It’s one of those songs that will unquestionably end up on your indie playlist. It’s available on all streaming services, so check it out.