During his latest BBC Magnum Opus, Professor Brian Cox somewhat unsettled me. After 55 minutes of the Prof soothingly explaining the creation of the moon and why it affects the tides in quite the way it does, plus a quite spectacular sequence in which he flies straight towards the setting sun and, upon reaching a speed in excess of that at which the earth turns, sees the setting sun rise, he suddenly starts talking about Space-time. Having convinced us earlier that we have no choice but to process time as a linear progression, he drops the bomb that, according to Space-time, while we might have moved on from a moment in normal time, that moment still exists, out there somewhere in Space-time (soft-focus wistful look at the horizon while looking casual and slightly windswept.) Yet there is no way for us to return to these moments. At his feet is arranged a time-line of photographs from his past, saturated colours now tastefully faded. An idyllic childhood summer, Christmas with his grandparents, adolescent pop-star on tour in Budapest, his wedding and his son as a baby; all emotionally charged memories, fading into beautiful images like those spread before him, of moments now lost to us yet still happening out there in Space-time. Heart-breaking.
Over the course of 67 blissed-out minutes, ‘Essay’ by Warmth on the Spanish ARCHIVE label does its best to recover this situation. It takes those faded, beautiful photographs and memories and spreads them out unhurriedly before you. Soon you are wallowing in the warmth of memories of times-passed, cocooned in the gentle fuzz, field recordings and quiet beauty of Warmth’s work. Melodies are there for sure but they seem to support your own personal reverie and not steer your mood. I have listened to this album all the way through a number of times but would be hard pressed to hum any tune in particular. But that’s not the point. I can’t shake the feelings of contented melancholia that Essay engenders.
So Space-time may well hold all our precious moments as they happen and guard them from us, locked as we are into linear time. But that’s OK. We have our memories, beautifully fading, and Warmth understand.
Unfortunately the CD version of Essay has sold-out but is available as a download from the ARCHIVES label’s Bandcamp page.here.
Essay by Warmth was enjoyed this Sunday morning with a Monsooned Malabar and a bittersweet Andres Gavino Orange and Aniseed Tortas, also from Spain. Yum.