On their first full-length studio album since the deeply elegiac ‘Mysterium’ a little over a year ago, the Nashville-based duo of Marc Byrd & Andrew Thompson known as Hammock find themselves following a “vertical, upward movement back toward the light”. This progression from the low places of grief toward beckoning illumination is subtly depicted on the cover of Universalis and the hopeful, healing tone of the music echoes that trajectory while hearkening back to some of the most beloved recordings in the band’s canon as well as some of their early influences. For example, one can hear the sweeping atmospheric balladry of ‘Raising Your Voice to Stop an Echo’ and the glacial stillness of ‘Maybe They Will Sing for Us Tomorrow’ alongside the orchestral neoclassical grandeur of their more recent works.
This warm melding of influences into an immersive, fluid whole is exemplified in the album’s title track which has been released as a foregleam of what’s to come along with a gorgeous video which makes sublime use of bokeh effect and silhouettes awash in swirling blue-green tones to match the efflorescent beauty of the music.
‘Universalis’ will be available December 7 on CD as well as a variety of double vinyl LP editions – standard black and a pair of limited editions (clear and smoke). See the Hammock Bandcamp page for details as well as special bundles on offer.