WILLIAM CASHION – Postcard Music

Rating: 4/5
Distributor/label: https://famousclass.com
Released: 2020
Buy Album: https://williamcashion.bandcamp.com/album/postcard-music
Band Website: https://williamcashion.bandcamp.com

Band Line-up:

William Cashion

Tracklisting:

1. Lightning Bug
2. Whalehead
3. Triple Ocean
4. Twin
5. Piña Rosa
6. Still Pond Creek
7. Vizcaya
8. Abelone
9.Cana Cassette
10. South Atlantic
11. Fulgurite

Review:

William Cashion is an atmospheric music artist who is also the bassist of Future Islands. His debut album ‘Postcard Music’ will be released on 7th August, 2020 through Famous Class Records. It is a collection of sound experiments shaped by thoughts of meditation, exploring, and the ocean. It was inspired by the question ‘what is the sound of a song that has no beginning or end?’ The eleven songs were recorded in the Eastern Shore of Maryland and the composer’s hometown of Baltimore.

There are definite highs and lows in this album, but mostly highs. Usually the minimalism is very effective in creating a chilled out and dreamy atmosphere, but ‘Whalehead’ sounds plain with very basic harmony that whilst positive, doesn’t alter states of consciousness much at all. Rather it gets annoying and almost brings to mind a child playing the same thing over and over. ‘Cana Cassette’ is just as simple but it does transport the mind a little to a beach or a range of hills. The composer clearly knows what he’s doing as much of the harmony is very well written. ‘Vizcaya’ is actually pretty complex in terms of its jazzy, spacey chord progressions that almost bring to mind Erik Satie. But an electronic music version of him. 

Rather than Cashion not being able to write consistently, he probably tried to be varied and compose build ups to climaxes in a more subtle way, rather than with a bombastic or progressive approach, but he doesn’t seem to fulfil all his goals. ‘Twin’ starts to build up nicely, then it fades out making it seem like the piece is unfinished. With a little alteration, it could have easily been a highlight. Furthermore, its driving bass line is rhythmically dull and sounds cliched but it’s far from distracting. ‘Pina Rosa’ has a more jumpy sound, bringing to mind happy, bouncing, playing children on holiday but again, its ending is not so good.

To conclude, does the music sound like it has no beginning or end? Maybe in a way in that some pieces are very non-changing, but the music doesn’t stand out as anything groundbreaking. You could say that many if not most ambient works have no clear start or finish. Other pieces in Postcard Music on the other hand develop in a more ‘classic’ way with tensions, releases and clear structures. This album is mostly fairly strong and the production is lush and soothing. It certainly sounds meditative and brings to mind the water, so Cashion has mostly done an admirable job. Recommended for people feeling streesed!

Review by Simon Wiedemann
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