While readers and listeners by and large look forward to all the album lists that fill up our social timelines from December to January, it seems musicians increasingly take a dimmer view of them. It is understandable. Any list, no matter how thoughtfully curated or diverse, is by definition exclusionary. Many argue compellingly that art is expression, not competition. So, it is with a certain amount of guilt & self-consciousness with which I publish my own annual round-ups, but it must be said that at the end of the day they prove to be useful vectors of discovery for a great many people.
When I wrap up the year for Stationary Travels, I often enjoy surveying what others have shared and I always find gems I’ve neglected or overlooked completely that become new favorites. So it is with Marek Kamiński‘s wonderful release from the spring of 2019 entitled Not Here which appeared on Headphone Commute’s selections under the theme Music for Withered Leaves and Lonely Fishtanks.
There was an air of slight familiarity to it that made perfect sense when I was reminded Kamiński previously recorded as Lights Dim and released one of my favorite albums of 2013 in collaboration with Gallery Six called Between Spaces on the Nature Bliss label. At first listen the warm textures, delicate melodies, and immersive soundscaping drew me right in and I’ve found myself returning to it often as one of those albums that always seems perfectly suited end a day in peaceful reflection or to begin one anew.
Not Here is available in a limited vinyl LP edition (200 copies) as well as digital download. The album was mastered by Rafael Anton Irisarri and features cover art by Stefan Lammel.