“Each song is on the verge of communicating some deep truth but not quite being able to articulate it,” explains mari maurice of electronic project more eaze, “like accidentally mumbling a secret while sleep-talking.” She’s talking about her new album oneiric. It’s a lush endeavor spanning six pieces that brings together orchestral, electronic, vocal, and textural elements to melodically-rich, tonally-precise results, meditating on the perhaps not so wide gap between everyday life and fantasy. She notes “During the time of creation, I began to develop deep, unrequited feelings for someone close to me, and my dreams began to consist of doing quotidian things with this person, but in environments that were geographically or architecturally impossible. The Texas Hill Country would open up to a neon-lit New York City that we'd walk arm and arm through. We'd go shopping at malls containing caverns and rivers next to Hot Topics and Macys.”
In some ways, oneiric is one long love song. The album begins with “a romance” and household sounds - a running sink, whooshing air in the background, some kind of snipping - before piano, strings, and electronics float in. The composition swells until it’s a patient, synth-driven waltz, soaring to dizzying heights with maurice’s autotuned vocals cresting atop a noise section. Within that static, it’s easy to hear her vocals buzzing with new love and dream.
Throughout the album, maurice uses field recordings, panning, and ASMR tactics to brandish her personal universe - one that rides a line of possibility familiar to plunderers of the dream world. Field recordings of stoned walks through her neighborhood make way for teeming, digital instrumentation and vice versa. Others come along for the voyage such as emo ambient cohort Claire Rousay on the album’s most subdued composition “heartbreaker” and the devastating Philadelphia-based musician Lucy Liyou providing rich, evocative vocals on “uninvited.”
oneiric is fantasy without the irony - it’s a portrait of an artist excavating her own desires while navigating the ontologically real. It’s an exhibition of the liminal space between the diurnal and the fanciful, one that manages to summon that feeling universally even though it’s the result of a personal inspection. Across these six songs, maurice makes a claim on basking in the farfetched, even if it’s a Sisyphean myth - but if you’re gonna roll a rock up and down a hill for eternity, let it be a pretty one.
released April 1, 2022
Master by Giuseppe Ielasi
Artwork by incepBOY
Words by Jordan Reyes
Lathe Cuts produced @ Disc Archive, Berlin
Cassettes pro dubbed @ Monotype
supported by 54 fans who also own “more eaze - oneiric”
There is this feeling of a breath that can stop at any moment without knowing when. Everything becomes fragile and uncertain. Very interesting symbiosis between the instruments which seem to be one. Beautifully recorded. sylvain-levier