A day spent meandering along the banks of a silent river in the company of only one’s own thoughts and the sounds of rustling leaves, gently lapping water or a crackling fire. It’s a renewal our modern life rarely affords, but for about 35 minutes, one can travel to such a state of mind with “Remember We Were Waiting For The Snow” by Lunt, a Latvia-based project by Žils Deless-Vēliņš.

Few artists match his ability to blend electronic and organic sources while securing a delicate balance between textural soundscapes and melodic structures. Those who have followed his work know there is always a compelling foundational concept behind each of Lunt’s recordings, and “Remember We Were Waiting For The Snow” is no different in that regard. Žils is as much an explorer as a musician with a growing portfolio of incredible experimental works that are equal part compositions and sonic world buildings.

And what better way to step into a new year than to ride the oscillating waves of this album? Described as “solastalgia: our anxiety, our concern, our sadness to see some natural phenomenon disappear,” the record was written five years ago after Žils relocated to Latvia. While you won’t have to look far to seek ambient recordings on this 8-track album, there is a gossamer beauty to his diaphanous webs of guitar, rare quality, and an immaculate shimmer of stillness that captures the essence of retreating into solitude. Built around a reflective, moving guitar-driven ambiance, there is stillness and comfort to be found in every corner of the album.

Gently opening the album, on ‘Flakes and Feathers‘, Lunt pays particular attention to guitar lines and textures, giving them space to radiate the blue melancholic to the music. On ‘Plasma (Under The Ice),’ he changes the tone into a meditative drone recollection and conscious absence. The track is a more austere piece swaddled in translucent layers of melancholic beauty.

Dead Man In The Sand,’ ‘Crossing Daugava,’ and ‘Fluent Like The Snow’ are not only ambient soundscapes but redolent meditations capable of disinterring a long-forgotten memory or inducing a wistful reverie. Every track feels like a luminous solitude, capable of offering you tranquility or a much-needed mental reset.

Lasteka‘ brings something playful to the record. While the deep, resonant guitar notes map outlines and boundaries, the shoegaze notes fill in their contours so that the music can dance in the borderlands where contrasting worlds meet: the time-bound and the timeless, the ancient and the modern. When the music slows down a bit on ‘Dead Man in The Snow‘ and ‘Auseklis,’ the beauty Lunt conjures is breathtaking. The record entirely gravitates toward themes that contemplate the fragility and meaning of life.

Thoughtfully arranged and bonded in a marvelous aesthetic, “Remember We Were Waiting For The Snow” is a journey unto itself and quite a moving and remarkable one. Fans of Žils’s work will find the album deeply rewarding, while new listeners will doubtfully find themselves motivated to reach back into his catalog for more.

Follow LUNT on:
Bandcamp | Soundcloud | Youtube

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Still can't tell exactly my origins because of my suspiciously ‘Chinese eyes’.