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CECILIA::EYES // SORE MEMORIES ALWAYS END (2LP)
RELEASE DATE: 3rd December 2021
It’s been a while since we’ve heard from the Belgian shoegaze/post-rock veterans Cecilia::Eyes, the last time being back in 2014 when they released their third LP Disappearance. Seven years can feel like a lifetime, but thankfully their newest double album Sore Memories Always End is expansive enough to fill that vast space. At over seventy-five minutes, this record may look intimidating on the surface, but listeners will find it’s much the opposite. Shimmering melodies, dreamlike song structures, disembodied vocals, and production that seems to reveal limitless layers all coalesce to form exactly the sort of album that benefits from a meditatively meandering running time.
While not necessarily intended as a concept album, Sore Memories Always End nonetheless floats through the listener’s mind as a cohesive and enveloping work. If you’ve ever looked upon Van Gogh’s Starry Night Over Rhone, or Verschuier’s The Great Comet Of 1680 Over Rotterdam, you’ll have some understanding of what this music sounds like. Just as those paintings are comprised of countless brush strokes combining to reflect feelings we’ve all experienced but struggle to express, Sore Memories Always End presents as a single breathtaking image told through thousands of glistening, reverb-drenched notes. It is a record that can’t really be understood through individual songs as well as it is by way of comprehensive, attentive immersion.
It’s difficult to distill Sore Memories Always End into a simple assessment of individual refrains or vocal passages, because nothing is framed to stand alone. The album is a mood more than it is a collection of songs; a space undefined - by design - in which to drift, to dream, and to disconnect. It is left to the listener where the music leads them, but chances are that direction is going to be either upward or inward. This is music meant for darkened rooms, dusky landscapes, and distant stars, sonically passive yet demanding active engagement – a difficult balance that is impressively and consistently achieved over more than an hour and a quarter. Anyone seeking a record that they can perceive as both an experience and an embrace will no doubt feel at home within the spacious environment that emerges the moment they drop the needle on Sore Memories Always End.
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