About a month ago musical busybody Aaron Snow posted on the Landing FaceBook Page
, "I made this thing because I missed recording onto 4 track cassette machines and worship the Daves (Mercer and Pearce). I used quarter century old cassettes that Iíve been hanging on to since the 90ís."
By Dave Pearce he means the person behind Flying Saucer Attack. I enjoy FSA, and even reviewed them here way back when this site was brand new. Now that he mentions it, i can see a connection between FSA and Landing: both acts make meandering guitar music that loops and reverbs in ambient layers.
Dave Mercer recorded under the name Light. I am not familiar with this project, but Aaron assured me that it is similar to FSA, so i have since gone and given some listens. Light, like FSA and Landing, makes odd ambient guitar music. It's pretty cool stuff, and Aaron has named this solo project after Mercer's first album as Light, from back in 1996.
I suppose that what Landing do is take this sort of hazy guitarwork and add a little more depth to it, in the form of Ms. Snow's voice and keys, and in the bass and drums that have occasionally been part of the Landing sound.
But Aaron wanted to spend some time back at his roots, as it were. And i respect that. And, of course, i had to listen.
There are three songs here at about 21 minutes. That type of song to time ratio is pretty typical for this sort of stuff, so people who are into this music will not balk at the seven-minute average song length.
Lead track Mercer starts with a light organic keyboard-y hum, like something from a Boards of Canada song. Slowly, an echoed acoustic thrums in, just a faint layer of guitar reverbing over the haze. This song reminds me of Seasons-era Landing. Very nice.
Snow gets a little noisy on Send me Down. The guitar is a little overdriven and wavering, the drums lost somewhere in the layers of distortion, Aaron's voice a distorted rumble. The whole song echoes and seems almost about to break apart. This is very much in the spirit of Flying Saucer Attack.
The final song is called Instrumental I and of the three songs here, it is the most like a normal Landing song. There is a layer of noodling guitar and Aaron picks an acoustic guitar melody on top, while the percussion is a faint shaking. This is very lovely.
In fact, the whole EP is very pretty. This will appeal to Landing fans. I am glad that Mr. Snow indulged in this homage. Well done.