Poemme – Blooming Spring EP (Stereoscenic, 2017)

Blooming Spring

Although we’re now well past Springtime and all its excitations, sometimes it’s nice to reflect on the year’s months and seasons past. Blooming Spring is presently, in that sense, an ode to the memory, the dream, of Spring, a coda of its passing as we hang sweatily in the clutches of Summer. Here we yearn for the clarity of the days when life was on the cusp; the wriggling excitations set to burst; the still thawing dawns before the Solstice, and yet still recall the gloomy frozen touch of Winter’s grasp.

This cosy little EP clocks in at just under 30 minutes and across its 5 languid pieces a seasonally short day elapses, the passage noticeable in its brevity and inability to fully warm the land that so craves the restorative power of sunlight. Opening “Morning Sun” is a glowing, radiant introduction, filled with shimmering airs and slips of birdsong to greet a new day, all soft vocal coos and crinkly static washes lost in pale gold and pastel tones. There’s a sense of life here, hints of newness in the system being breathed back into existence with each advancing minute.

And so life responds in kind with couplet “Symphony of Meadow” and “Tadpoles”; harmonious, rhythmic synth drones hover and sway in enveloping sweetness in the former, guitar bendings and tattered electronic oscillations evoke the cool wind that tickles the budding tips out in the plains and fields. It’s lush, innocent, young. The latter is similarly vibrant in its quietude, filled with gurglings and dribblings, its surface drones silky and muted in an almost protective patina, shielding the flickering synths of the aqueous inhabitants from the world’s harshness.

It makes the final two pieces seem a lot more melancholy than they really are; penultimate”Melting Streams” continues to bubble and burble, yet it feels suppressed and chilly, the drone minimalism a reductive reminder of the state of much of the environment still; ponds remain frozen over and streams are still lined with rime, the Sun’s strength still insufficient to penetrate this Winter coat. Closing “Evening Wind” is even more blue, the diametric opposite of the opener: birds tweet reluctantly, tiny signalers of the impending despondency of night; drones feel eked out and thin, lost in quickly dying light as the barely heated Earth begins to spin back to the cold frigidity of night.

Spring is really a time of craving, of barely restrained impatience in all living things: Winter is tiresome, dark and lonely, and we’re all just counting down the days to its passing.