Boomkat Product Review:
Sarah Davachi and Sean McCann evoke Terrence Malick's poetic "Days of Heaven" on their golden-hour-recorded debut collaboration. It's gentle music for shadowless romance and off-grid moods - an antidote to anxiety-laced online life that sounds so personal it's almost voyeuristic.
Collaborations don't have to be the result of wrestling egos. Davachi and McCann have both proved themselves as solo artists, so when the couple came together last year to record 'Mother of Pearl' there were no expectations and no locked horns. The result is a free-flowing series of gorgeous instrumental improvisations that illustrate their personal and artistic partnership with the lightest possible touch. Recorded at their apartment in Los Angeles and at a farmhouse on McCann's birthday last year, the album possesses a slim scale that feels rare in today's vast musical universe; both artists are known for their delicate minimalism, but 'Mother of Pearl' feels even more gossamer, as if it was never intended for public consumption.
There's wordless poetry on opening track 'LA in the Rain', snipped from the duo's first recording session in 2020, with viola and piano offering a surprising inversion of the expected Los Angeles cityscape. McCann and Davachi's LA is a distant hum of rain on tarmac that paves over a melancholy, violent past. They contemplate further on the album's heady centerpiece 'Lamplighter', with soft-focus piano slowly placed across tape-saturated weightless drones and distant bells. It's an almost ritualistic meditation but without the new age hallmarks.
Elsewhere 'Keep Outside the Night' sounds completely frozen in time, with pillowy notes drowsing beneath industrial clanking that just hints at a wild world outside. The album's like a log fire on a cold day: we're lucky to have it.