Outrun The Sunlight • A Vast Field Of Silence [2xLP]
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A Vast Field Of Silence by Outrun The Sunlight on 180g colored vinyl.
Comes in a gatefold sleeve in two variants:
- Trans Orange w/ Black Center Blob (limited to 150 copies)
- Smokey Black w/ Orange Center Blob (limited to 150 copies)
EU pressing exclusively available via dunk!records.
Releases on June 17th, 2022.
Four years after ascending new heights and igniting the imaginations of listeners with their enthusiastically praised EP Red Bird, Chicago’s Outrun The Sunlight have returned with A Vast Field Of Silence to once again bolster their well-earned reputation as inimitable integrators of post-rock and prog. An impeccably performed and produced record, it proves to be a striking showcase of both their unassailable individual musical abilities and their seamless performance as a collective. Since their inception, Outrun The Sunlight have revolved around ideas originating in the mind of guitarist Austin Peters and translated by both Peters and guitarist Cody McCarty, but on A Vast Field Of Silence listeners can hear the expanded contributions of OTS’s other players. Additional writing from bassist Phil Kalas, piano and synth arrangements by Kyle Kunkler, and the spotless precision of drummer Luke Angle all bring valuable perspective and irreplaceable dynamics to a record that thrives on balancing skillful execution and thoughtfully layered atmospheric elements. The result is an entirely cohesive collection of songs that continues the through line that has characterized the band’s discography, while also introducing richly rewarding new dimensions that unify harmoniously with everything that has come before.
A Vast Field Of Silence is a sonically thematic concept album, based around the reoccurrence of a specific melody as opposed to a more traditional narrative idea. It is first heard as the bright central refrain of opening track “Awareness,” then again in a more contemplative form via the delicate nylon string acoustic performance of “Luminous Stillness,” then one final time as the triumphant climactic march of the title track, during which it unifies the record’s darker, heavier inclinations with its own inextinguishable incandescence. Between these three unique-but-connected moments are tracks which run across an aural landscape in ways that touch upon individual spaces while always standing in service of the overall essence of the album.
There is a tangible thread that exists in the sequencing of the songs. “Emerald Joy” and “A Way With Honesty” follow “Awareness” with a radiance that not only aligns with their predecessor in the track listing, but also the overarching warmth that permeated Red Bird. But as A Vast Field Of Silence shifts into its second act, there is a noticeable darkness present that informs both the naming of “Old Wounds” and “Dreamless Chaos” and the performance that distinguishes this pair from their counterparts. It is on these two songs that listeners will feel the strongest presence of the band’s background in djent stylings and experience the furthest foray into moodier territories. It takes the placidity of the aforementioned “Luminous Stillness” to set the record back down into heartening terrain for the restrained and reassuring “Brindle,” which proves an appropriately placid reintroduction to the record’s more buoyant inclinations as the record approaches and fulfills its crescendo on the subsequent “Zero Dimension,” “Molten Light,” and “A Vast Field Of Silence.”
Peters has stated that “these songs have followed me through a very transformative period of my life. They've helped reveal fears around my instinct to create, and my joy in fulfilling that creation. I feel grateful for the people, especially the past and present members of this band, who have walked down parts of that road alongside me. Now it's something I feel ready to let go of and give away.” This progression can be felt during a mindful negotiation of the album in its entirety. There are moments of confident exuberance, embittered aggression, and joyous release, all of which serve the central melodic theme, which is presented in varying measures that suggest a fondly recalled past, a pensive present, and promising future. The beauty of the record is that it offers this level of profundity to those who seek it, while possessing a surface beauty that befits a more straightforward reading. The decision ultimately falls at the feet of the individual, with the reassuring promise that no choice is ever binding.