23 October 2010

Auburn Lull - begin civil twilight (2008, Darla)

A few bands are exceptions, living besides tendencies, in their own bubble, enriching their own ground, preserving their special ecosystem. In the shoegaze realm, Pia Fraus is such a band, Auburn Lull another, if the first one, from Estonia, has built a universe from My Bloody Valentine, this one, from Lansing, Michigan, is like a lost child of Slowdive, playing atmospheric songs of pastoral dreampop.

Strangely they are not pure revivalists, not backward-looking musicians. If their music is born in the early nineties, they have revealed its sheen, turning it into amber gemstones, with the facilities of the digital era. We are here, looking at the light crossing these.

But what is “begin civil twilight”?  One small Google search away ( http://www.planetultra.com/civil.html ) :  “ According to the U.S. Naval Observatory, civil twilight is defined to begin in the morning, and to end in the evening when the center of the Sun is geometrically 6 degrees below the horizon. This is the limit at which twilight illumination is sufficient, under good weather conditions, for terrestrial objects to be clearly distinguished; at the beginning of morning civil twilight, or end of evening civil twilight, the horizon is clearly defined and the brightest stars are visible under good atmospheric conditions in the absence of moonlight or other illumination. In the morning before the beginning of civil twilight and in the evening after the end of civil twilight, artificial illumination is normally required to carry on ordinary outdoor activities. Complete darkness, however, ends sometime prior to the beginning of morning civil twilight and begins sometime after the end of evening civil twilight.”

As deduced here, darkness is not the point of this record, but not totally absent, with the reference to this instant when illumination really starts, this return to the light. Auburn Lull's music is like moving away from a melancholic state and slowly drifting towards a blurry state of wonder and remission. If there is nothing strictly euphoric here, nothing joyful, appeasement and lightness are always the major directions.

I can't say that I'm blown away or swept away by their music, but I'm consciously accomplice of what is plotted below. “Begin Civil Twilight” is deeply pleasant and nice, perfect when you simply want to doze, it's full of happiness and carefreeness.

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