Review Summary: Elsewhere
Wading through the simultaneous mundanity and turbulence of an average week can be a slog at times. That isn’t to say that I have a notably difficult life, nor that day-to-day life is often all that hard in Western society, relatively speaking; merely that sometimes, as we’re going through the motions of the everyday, we all need a breather. To achieve such a breather, music is exceptionally valuable. More than that, for many of us, I suspect it to be a necessity, acting as that helping hand that gets us through the day. In this sense, Shooter’s Last Day
has been my latest escape.
The EP, at its core, is a post rock-ian ambient project. Genre-tagging aside though, Last Day
would be far more accurately described as a journey. Through the pleasantly varied 25 minutes you truly feel like you’ve gone somewhere, exploring the world that Shooter conjures. The listener drifts through what feels like some underwater escapade in ‘Ocean Sounds’, draped in mystery and atmosphere as sounds echo from the abyss. The largely digitally constructed landscape feels very alive, with waves and murmurs of what sound like whales washing over the listener. One is swiftly propelled to the clouds in the bright ‘We Synched’, presenting a crisp and open sky of sound; much like with the similarly soaring ‘Other Places’ and the fleeting farewell of the project’s closer (and title-track), the piece feels organic in its delicate weave of guitar, keys and strings. Contrastingly, the almost otherworldly and weightless ‘Sanctuary’ soothingly ebbs and flows, enveloping the listener in a brief ‘Stars of the Lid’-esque odyssey. A similarly isolated experience awaits in ‘teej’, though not in the same relaxing way. The song eerily unfolds and engulfs you in its cold embrace, an intriguing and borderline sinister stretch of the journey that stands out wonderfully from its uplifting counterparts.
Each soundscape presented to the listener feels distinct and set apart from its surroundings, yet never out of place; the cohesion and logical pacing of the EP is impressive, casually leading the listener from location to location whilst nonetheless feeling immensely natural in the direction it takes you. What begins as an adventure quickly grows into a comforting retreat after a few listens. The few flaws scattered across its run time (an underdeveloped idea here and there, or the excessive silence that concludes ‘Sanctuary’) mature into the familiar and endearing marks of a companion. I’m certain I will continue to take refuge in the neat little sanctuary Shooter has carved out for months to come. Simple it may be, and I’m sure to some this will be little more than another
release in a crowded genre – however, for those with a bit of patience and a little too much stress, look no further.