A welcoming return to these pages of an old friend, Yellow6 has been part of the very fabric of these missives from their earliest days, emerging from the post rock / space rock / ambient scene Jon Atwood (nee Yellow6) has established himself as one of the foremost purveyors in the art of crafting mood moving widescreen soundscapes. Countless albums and compilation appearances totalling into three figures most mainly ridiculously limited in nature – have ensured him the noteworthy reputation of being every completest worst nightmare. With the obligatory year ending festive release ‘merry6mas’ almost upon us and expected shortly, Silber records have just released ‘closer to the sea without moving’. Limited to just 150 copies this ten track suite was inspired by a trip to Norfolk, staying at the doomed Happisburgh Lighthouse, itself like some 200 year old silent guardian observing all around disappearing, this landmark site has all but given up and resigned itself to its coming fate with the seas around reclaiming the surrounding areas at an alarming rate, such is the rate of erosion that the area has been flagged up of major concern in the European communities. Jon and his family stayed at the lighthouse earlier this year, part holiday part research – tapping into the moods and observing the slow destruction and the victory of nature with most of the albums sketch notes completed whilst sitting on the steps of this monolith looking out to sea. ‘closer to the sea without moving’ is a study in reflection, traced in moments of beauty and dulled by sadness it presents a thoughtful and touching epitaph to this landmark monument drawing heavily on the loneliness of its 200 year old task and the sorrow of the once vibrant community built around it now lost and fallen silent whilst considering its own eventual demise and the nothingness beyond to come.  Music wise as ever the string strokes exude a touch of finite serene elegance, opening track ‘looking back towards the sea’ providing a sketch map as to where we are, its thoughtful contours etching out a ‘true’ era Roy Montgomery canvas base from which to work. ‘lighthouse’ takes the perspective from the landmarks point of view, a sense of the calm before the storm sullies and steals it in a crushing mournful sadness. The set though is dominated beautifully by the five part ‘closer to the sea’ suite, here Atwood comes into his own rifling through as where the lighthouse’s old memories, the centre point being the delicately harnessed ‘part 2’ – it’s here that Atwood’s mastery of intimacy and the channelling of moods comes into exacting focus, from the opining grace and carefree motifs that speckle its introduction to the storm lashed brutality of the conversation between the victim and perpetrator at 8.27 wherein the onset of feedback ruptures suddenly threaten with dooming consequence, between these polar extremes the lighthouse’s sense of pride, its solace and solitary watch are met in expressive detail with ‘part 3’ reminiscing upon happier safe times observing the ebb and flow of the passing day and the mournful end game recital that is ‘part 5’. All said we here are quite smitten by the demurring beauty of the Mancini meets Vini O’Reilly spectral detailing that dapples the fragile grooves of the mellowed ‘red candy’ which only falls into runners up spot at the emergence of the gorgeously serene Fahey schooled ‘sleet day’ – exquisite as you’d rightly expect.

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