While I’m not a huge fan of pointing out details about the artist in reviews, sometimes I think it’s important to make note of certain surprising revelations that seem to make the music sound just a little better. For instance, in Find Hope In Darkness we find its creator, Glenn Dick, is actually just 15 years old and seemingly already in striking command of crafting thick and heady, cathartic Drone sequences that invoke a certain sensation of an aspiring Thomas Koner, and I don’t make that esteemed comparison lightly. Locked So Tightly In Our Dreams is a 45 minute excursion into bleak and cold dronescapes that’ll leave you astonished that someone so young could produce something so emotionally powerful considering the topics presented.
The first of the two pieces falls with “Fading Memories”, already a somewhat melancholic introduction with its title alone. It continues to be so and lives up to its namesake remarkably well, at first barely making a dent above the background noise but slowly finding traction as it unfurls scant and depressive drone structures with a light static fuzz, the tape continuing to wind forwards but the content largely lost or out of view. Some hints of a beautiful melody that has fallen foul of time makes an intermittent appearance towards the midpiece, floating ethereally reverbed synth lines through the choking fugue that we’ve allowed the piece to develop, albeit with a sense of flat resignation. This idea of the flow of time in its slowly and endlessly looping sequences is reinforced at the very end of the piece as a trickle of dripping water makes a subtle impression on the music, its course slowing down as its reservoir approaches emptiness and then…silence.
Secondary piece “Last Breath” is equally, if not even more, morbid in its fascinations, but instead of slipping away into quiet, almost unnoticed, oblivion, it takes a rather more empowered approach and thrusts slightly denser, darker Drone sequences at us. These luxurious onlaps of thick synth coupled with distant, infrequent and heavily reverbed bell tollings create a track obsessed with the continuing mechanical action of breathing; arriving in shallow waves of slow sound we can almost hear the motion of the life-giving air and see the slow rise and fall of a ribcage, almost sensing the closeness of its failure and impending demise. It’s mournful and withdrawn but almost reverential in both the face of death and the fragility and fundamental reliance on this simple act, its sad and increasingly soft drones waiting for that final moment where the life that hinges on such a basic reflex will be extinguished permanently.
I can only issue praise to someone who has created something so poignant and at so young an age, as well as perhaps ponder how such bleak and forbidden thoughts came to be expressed in his music. It’s a gloriously, deliciously foreboding release that, like many others, affixes itself to the human wonderment of death and its mysteries through its softly shifting and lapping drones, its scant and minimal constructions handling the topic with the care and appropriately reserved curiosity to which it is deserving. I genuinely can’t recommend this enough, and I’m excited to see Glenn’s works in the coming years; if this is anything to go by, we’re in for an interesting journey.
The album can be streamed and bought from the label’s Bandcamp found here.