Review: Night Within by L A N D

It’s the best record I’ve heard in a long time: the debut by L A N D – Night Within; out July 31, 2012 via Important Records.

It’s described by the record company as “approaching an apocalyptic noir narrative.”  This calls to mind many a creation from Blade Runner to Nick Harkaway’s most recent novel Angelmaker.  A bit of science fiction with a bit of Sherlock Holmes.

There is death here; otherworldly possession.  Dreams get mapped as a drug for the willing.

A world where to question is reality.  To question is the only way to propel through the day.

The apocalypse is a big topic these days.  Whether it’s zombies or climate change, we are obsessed with our own demise.

But, we want to witness it.  We want to see the apocalypse for all its illuminant glory.

But, it’s not something to witness.  It’s not something from which to return.

There is no going back.

Apocalypse is a reset; a freedom bell from the current constraints of reality.

It’s not a vacation, but a leveling.

Life spawns from the spew of endless chatter disintegrating the membrane.  The end is the beginning – a new world filled with mysteries and unknown charters.

And it’s got to have a sound.

L A N D have composed this sound.  They have embraced the arrangements that a reset might impose and produced a new beginning – a new language for a new world.  It’s an embrace of what centuries of music have delivered to our understandings; an embrace of our questions and the desire to question.  Utilizing the talents of Ben Frost, the sonic palette is rich in nuance and layers thought together like a dip.  At times clean levels showcase their contribution; delivering their offering as a separate, but together entity.  And then there is the eating.  The mashup of it all into an order all its own; changing with every bite.

It’s easy to place Night Within amongst the greatest of literature, philosophy and film.  But, it’s not clamoring for that.  It’s not trying to change the world.  The music is for the world.  A soundtrack to the shiftings of cataclysm; trying to exist; trying to be for just a few moments in time.

A lot can happen in a few short moments.  Worlds shift on actions, both large and small, redirecting the DNA of the universe.

In a world where music is bought less and less, this is an album worth buying; worth sinking into; worth following down the rabbit hole.

This is the world as it can be (should be) – boundaries a bit broken – a willingness to be your own destruction.  It’s the kind of push we need to have any chance at a future.

The great artists of our time are getting old.  Many young ones wish for money and glory over the slow tinkering of ideas.  There is no room for study and work in our world’s increasingly fast paced reverse.  To have something step out of line – to have something that doesn’t want what is deemed valuable by the whole- is worth taking out for at least a short drive.

We experience based on experience.  We see the world through the filters of our time.  Without these moments – without inspiration – we become the automatons feared, yet concomitantly desired.

The simpler way of being –

one that does not think to call the order into question.

Nice, clean and simple.

Night Within is a step in the ever distanced right direction. It will not top the charts and by lack of lyrics is not very sing-along-able.  But, this is music about music.  It’s an amalgamation of our last century and more.  It’s an opening to how far we have come and how much further we need to go.

It gives me hope, more than anything else; allows me to think that our greatest thinkers are not all buried in history.  Allows me to believe that the future could be bright.  “Those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music.”  Open the doors and windows; let a little light into your home.

L A N D release their debut album, Night Within on 31st July 2012 through Important Records. CD & LP packaged in deluxe first edition letter pressed jackets. LP pressed in an edition of 500. First 100 copies on color vinyl.

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