Hammock
Chasing After Shadows...Living with the Ghosts


4.5
superb

Review

by Josh D. USER (10 Reviews)
September 5th, 2010 | 50 replies | 11,818 views


Release Date: 2010 | Tracklist


7 of 7 thought this review was well written

A lot of people are bored by post-rock. I probably would be too if it were a year or two prior to typing this. Many do not know a whole lot about the genre either, which is a shame considering how much it seems to have grown and how diverse it can be. While I still have not given Godspeed You! Black Emperor the chance they deserve (this isn’t to say I dislike them, just haven’t really done much to get into them yet), there is a good deal of post-rock to be found and loved.

Attention spans aside, the genre is usually a grower, and it comes to be that gems are always around. Hammock would seemingly be trotting in quietly, but such is not the case. With already four full length albums under their belt, the band has been doing sturdy work. Although with only two members, they hardly seem like a band.

Chasing After Shadows...Living with the Ghosts has the basic qualities we’ve come to expect from their contemporaries like Stars of the Lid. Almost like a less electronic Lights Out Asia, Hammock’s music is stylistically similar. With some technically modest song lengths, the subtle cinematic landscapes produce a somber but inviting array of atmospheres. Both members take the usual minimalist approach with their guitars, allowing the soft ambience to proceed freely.

"Breathturn" is a great example of all of Hammock's best qualities. The slow build up lays down a foundation for the atmosphere to grow and the ambience to flourish. All of the songs themselves flow individually, and all in a similar manner. Fortunately, this concept doesn't grow stagnant, and track by track, the album continues a small degree of momentum. On paper, it sounds decent enough, but through speakers and headphones, it shows itself off as being exceedingly bright and stunning.

The scene they create is one of beauty and delicate textures. The mood it tends to elicit comes off as something short of melancholic, possibly cathartic. A night time listen to Chasing After Shadows offers these sobering emotions in a quiet package. The lack of drums is more than welcomed. In fact, it would almost go unnoticed if there wasn’t any drumming present due to the subtle stimulation of each track as it calmly delivers itself. In a manner of speaking, it comes off with a sort of ethereal feel.

This probably isn’t the best description of such music, but then again, Hammock belong to a genre best experienced through listening, and not so in words. Whether through uplifting passages or plodding soundscapes, the band produces a soft radiance that makes the listener eager, but not anxious. There is also some occasional voice work that provides an extra element of comfort to the mix. Hammock are quite masterful at their use of each aspect of the music.

Interestingly enough, there really isn’t anything to complain about. Two guys making a slow, ambient album with lacking guitars and drums never sounded so nice. Not to mention Chasing After Shadows should be shoved in to the conversation about overlooked, underrated albums of 2010. Under the radar, sure. But needing to breathe at the surface, absolutely.



Recent reviews by this author
Mohican Honest RedPhineas Newborn, Jr. A World of Piano!
The Dreaded Diamond Healthy FearsDavid Axelrod Songs of Experience
Lands SubtitlesTrophywife An Innocent Orphan In The Post-Modern World
user ratings (135)
Chart.
3.9
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
Canyons of Static
September 5th 2010



638 Comments


While I still have not given Godspeed You! Black Emperor the chance it deserves (this isn’t to say I dislike them, just haven’t really done much to get into them yet)

Just a tidbit, you use the band name singularly in the sentence but then in the plural (it/they) in the parentheses, might want to go "the chance they deserve"... Other than that, me likey, pos

Canyons of Static
September 5th 2010



638 Comments


Poor Joshy.

Lucid
Contributing Reviewer
September 5th 2010



7021 Comments


No way this is a 5.
Review reads like a 3.5 anyways.

Digging: Shabazz Palaces - Lese Majesty

bailar12
September 5th 2010



1766 Comments


What, Josh wrote another review? Weird.


enrique approves of this newer josh d.

Photon
September 5th 2010



1292 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

haven't listened to them before. Are they similar to Stars of the lid?

Photon
September 5th 2010



1292 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

thanks . which album would you recommend as a starting point?

SeaAnemone
September 5th 2010



19726 Comments


this definitely needed a review, I only read like the first half, admittedly, but I really liked it. Been meaning to listen to this, will sooner now, just gotta wait for the right time.

but yea, nice job on the review... talking about post-rock in general terms as a State of the Genre Address kinda thing is really ok, but it's also hard not to avoid so...

Digging: Towers - Bel Air Highrise Plantation

Canyons of Static
September 5th 2010



638 Comments


...

FlawedPerfection
Emeritus
September 5th 2010



2806 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Good but Raising Your Voice is better.

SeaAnemone
September 5th 2010



19726 Comments


understandable... it's almost too convenient not to do most of the time

AlexTM510
September 5th 2010



1398 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

it would have helped if you went into more detail about the some its songs/the progression of this album from previous. But i kinda figured ever since Chan wrote that article on how post-rock is boring everyone seems the need to comment on it hah.

pretty good review though, I got hooked onto hammock a few months and i've been seriously hooked since

TheyTookOurJobs
September 5th 2010



1318 Comments


I enjoy this album. I also enjoy this review.

MuffExpress
September 5th 2010



56 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Hammock = Awesome.

sexpoi
September 9th 2010



599 Comments


i liked the review. tbh post-rock is so hard to explain nowadays, everyone just expects long buildups and climaxes when in fact there could be more to the music than that but it's hard to explain the intricacies of the sound and every tiny aspect of it. but once again nice job, will listen

Evenoss
September 10th 2010



80 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

"Little Fly, mouchette" is probably my fave song from this, it sounds like "I Can Almost See You" (on "Raising Your Voice...").

climactic
September 14th 2010



18339 Comments


Good review Josh I'll deff check this out. Been getting into post-rock a lot lately

AlexTM510
September 20th 2010



1398 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

omg breathturn is gorgeous...nearly tear-jerking

Cryogenix
September 22nd 2010



114 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Amazing band, amazing album. Many post rock bands tend to be overly boring and repetitive but still have a huge fanbase. These guys however are somewhat diverse, and at times even more diverse than I'd ever expect from even an alternative rock band. Apart from that, they're simply amazing artists. I don't think anyone could describe the emotions these guys provoke by a simply diverse display of simple melodies. When introducing people with the band I simply show them the video of Breathturn. Not a single time did I get a negative response, mostly people either cry or start listening to the band daily...or both.

AnotherBrick
September 22nd 2010



9770 Comments


" mostly people either cry or start listening to the band daily...or both."

you obviously hang out with much cooler people than me

AnotherBrick
September 22nd 2010



9770 Comments


thats how i was with raising your voice. i need to listen to this one a few more times before rating



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





FAQ // STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2013 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Privacy Policy