Brian McBride is one half of AQ faves Stars Of The Lid, a group who specialized in somnambulent moonlit guitarscapes, dark and gorgeously lugubrious, and who more recently have begun to explore more lush and epic musical vistas. Some of my favorite late night dreamy drones have come from those Stars, so it's no surprise that McBride's first proper solo outing is just as mysterious and compelling. A lush series of swoonsome smears, warm chordal swells stretched into slow burning minor key sagas, minor key but still strangely hopeful sounding, sun dappled with the first rays of morning light after an endless night of darkness and despair.
Each piece on When The Detail Lost Its Freedom is delicately assembled from minimal violins, gentle piano, moaning trumpets, haunting western guitar, drifting disembodied vocals, and warm reverb, all swirled into indistinct shapes, like opening your eyes first thing in the morning, a hazy blurry dreamlike world, so serene and peaceful. At times, it almost sounds like the most minimal of post rock, but slowed down to a drumless crawl, the occasional vocals definitely remind me of Low, a darkly romantic slowcore, but wherever McBride takes these songs, we're never far from slipping back into a doleful drift of melancholy moods and slow shifting shimmers. It's sort of like staring into a thick cloudy swirl of sound, dense and drifting, with the occasional melody or voice slowly emerging and taking shape before flickering and fading out, dissolving into the swells of surrounding sound. So lovely.