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Album Review: Umber - Morning Pass EP

Umber is the musical project of multi-instrumentalist, Alex Steward. Recorded in a room within the picturesque backdrop of the English countryside, Umber is preparing for the release of his highly anticipated debut EP, ‘Morning’s Pass’.

The albums opener, ‘Drawing Curtains’ has that archetypal, ambient sound which encapsulates the overall feel of the EP within a matter of moments. Built upon layers and layers of various instruments (e-bow/guitars/bass), this airy, slow paced track can’t help but put a smile on your face.

The EP follows on seamlessly with ‘A Song For Two Seasons’. Within this track you see a lot more experimentation with various instruments; with flecks of piano and clarinet added into the menagerie, you get a compositional sound that is more similar to a classical piece of music than ambient post-rock piece, which frankly took me by surprise and makes for an exquisite listen.

Whilst it’s very easy to sit back and just “listen” to the album, tracks like ‘Tomorrow We’ll Throw Out Some Old Shoes’, ‘The Day We Left For Earth’ and ‘Spark Mountain’ warrant your undivided attention. All three seem to encompass a joyous energy that lifts the album to immeasurable heights until the EP finishes in much the same manner to which it began with ‘Mellow Drizzle’.

The music of Umber seems to transcend convention in every sense of the word and is the perfect example of contemporary music today. Throughout the whole of ‘Morning’s Pass’, you are treated to beautiful soundscapes that evoke a sense of nature and harmony, and whether you consider the music expressionist or experimental, the end result is completely and utterly mesmerising.


'Morning's Pass' EP by Umber is released on June 27th.

Umber on Bandcamp, Facebook, Last.FM and Twitter.

Words by Sandeep Dawett.

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