Deserta - Every Moment, Everything You Need
How can the moon not raise a poet's heart, if it can raise the sea!
(Carlos Sawedra Weise)
There was, not long ago, a sound that descended from the moon to reach the planet earth and that by chance managed to attract the attention of attentive souls, in the game of adoration which warms hearts and electrifies minds.
Before arriving here, it flew up from the craters of the moon, dodging the sense of possession of the only satellite of the Earth, and from those high lands it swooped down towards us, escaping from that silence it felt heavy.
It has taken up residence in the city of angels and has a name common to the Earth as well as the Moon: Deserta.
The pilot of that sound is Matt Doty, (singer, guitarist and multi-instrumentalist) who had tried to leave Los Angeles to inhabit the world with two projects, Saxon Shore and Midnight Faces.
Having exhausted that path, from that moment on everything was clear: we could cross his chameleon-like, recognisable style to see how the Moon is here, within the notes of an emotional tsunami that goes by the name of Every Moment - Everything You Need.
Produced by Chris Coady (Slowdive, Beach House), the successor of Black Aura My Sun is undoubtedly the representative of heterogeneous elements capable of compacting the mass of talent and ideas with a thousand roots that end up converging towards recognisability, that structural uniqueness which dilates the possibilities of creating songs like sweet tornadoes full of melody, with solutions in the spirit of continuous ductility.
It surprises again and again because it teaches pessimism towards the evolution of Shoegaze and Dreampop to die quietly, since it manages to dilate the boundaries of these musical genres, for the solutions and for the intensity with which it fills these almost forty-two minutes.
The atmosphere is just that of a day inside the lunar craters: Matt shows that we are not worthy of its beauty, that man must postpone the intention of taking possession of this satellite, because the density, the mystery, the feeling of a unique and wonderful climate would be wasted in our hands. One constantly gets the feeling that this music reveals how there is no place where man can be comfortable with the almost total absence of hydrogen. Deserta is a miracle of restlessness and shortness of breath, of rhythms and melodies that make you faint, suitable only for souls who abandon their sense of immortality to acclimatise to the conviction that you can die happily listening to these sounds, within the architecture of complex textures born to bewitch us and quickly become the drug which bends any desire to stay away from it.
Listening to the eight lunar craters is not addictive but gives an incredible sense of freedom, a pleasant farewell to the dream of a healthy terrestrial life to head with open lungs towards the moon, to sink into it without regret.
What do you want to dream about if you don't try to get an idea of what it would be like to live where all the romantic souls look at on wishful nights? So come on, be assured that in this album you will find the comfort and wealth that not even the greatest dream could give you....
Take your belief that you can only cry over sorrows and put it next to the stereo, because the density of this work will melt those tears you don't know you have...
Musically, the acceleration towards a post-rock that knows how to be much more than an extra is noticeable, with the annexed will to dress the songs with a pop that is in tune with the always present attitude to the perfect cohabitation between Dreampop and Shoegaze.
The use of keyboards allows wider and more effective solutions that, if on the one hand can turn up the nose of the purists and the extreme defenders of the two musical genres just mentioned, on the other hand give freshness and freedom that in the end allow our listening a greater fluidity.
Song by Song
Lost In The Weight
A track that would end an album for most artists. The astonishment comes immediately because it seems to close the possibility of understanding what could happen later, as it resembles the day after the lack of oxygen.
The beginning is powerful but able, with that magnetic keyboards, to keep us in suspense. Then Matt starts to sing and the chorus, which comes almost immediately, brings the first tears. It's like flying over Santa Monica Bay, until the song seems to bid us farewell. But the drumming and keyboards take a breath, dilating the senses towards the beach. This is a majestic example of how Shoegaze and Dreampop are not just walls of sound and melodies in abundance, since here a huge future scenario is revealed.
I'm So Tired
Can melancholy be thought of as an act of sweetness?
Absolutely, and that's a rare thing to find in music.
While it's clear that the electronic part comes in larger portions than on the first album, it's also true that Matt's voice touches lightly the skin like the favourite son of the most remote Dreampop, where it's not the guitar textures that nail our emotions. But it is enough to wait two minutes and thirty-three seconds and those few notes become the wonder that consoles and cheers those who were waiting for the reigning instrument of these musical genres.
From the Los Angeles beach, we glided almost by stealth to the moon...
Where Did You Go
An almost dramatic beginning.
Distant sparks, hisses and Caroline Lufkin's voice similar to a cheetah waiting to attack, so intense that it rides the lunar dunes with a sound base made of cold Slowdive and mothballed Cocteau Twins.
Then the guitars make love to the keyboards and the tension rises in disguise, until Caroline is left with drums and synth for a few seconds and her voice becomes a scratching claw. With the feeling that Chapterhouse have left traces of themselves in the second lunar crater.
Far From Over
The moon calls Los Angeles: please answer, Deserta has rays of expanding sound to deliver, please make way for Glassell Park and join that hilly sight to what is contained within these swirling, gently abrasive guitars that give way to electronics which enhance the feeling that in these notes are the keys to the future. And it is a dense texture that, starting from flying guitars, ends with a neurotic palpitation fading into the smoke bubble of our vibrations.
It's All a Memory
What does a Masterpiece look like?
Sit back and make way for the granite-like clamour of vibes aplenty, where vocals are a lunar gnome and the guitars and drums the perfect bridge connecting the best 4ad to the present day. And, when you get to the catwalk of voluptuous passions of the guitar at the minute 3:53, then you can define the enchantment of the emotional marriage of the senses, because here the farewell seems a splendid thing and the shivers become clusters...
A World Without
When vocals need a minimal musical base it means it can support anything, and Matt is able to achieve this result. But after a few seconds he becomes generous and makes the emotions grow with a development that moves the dust of dreams to make them red bricks, in a continuous shining of wrinkled-faced guitars.
There is everything here: from pain to fantasy, from softness to frenzy, guitars, vocals, bass, drums and keyboards have agreed to displace us, to kill us with the beauty of textures able to make us both dream and curl up in the sheets, weeping.
And someone thinks that Shoegaze is gasping for its last breath. You foolish man! Everything that evolves is always better than what remains anchored to the nostalgic past. And the ending of this song reaches the mind and heart of those who have understood the miracle they witnessed.
There are those who want to know the effects used by musicians with their instruments, those who want to know how everything is put together. And more.
But if you close your eyes and listen to the last song on this amazing album, you will realise that there is a language, a code that overrides every means used and their mode.
What comes here is the lunar storm, the ability to alternate, to insert clamour and timidity, in a sonic impact that leaves us lost in the unknown lunar territories, where Deserta is at ease.
It is a hiccup that seems interminable, 315 seconds to understand that we are not able to consciously determine the value of this listening, because where the mystery presents itself there is something that is lost.
And so we return to the Moon, rewind the tape and lose ourselves again, dressed in the most clamorous beauty...
Deserta has created the perfect dress in which thoughts and emotions fit perfectly together and in which the desire to imitate them, to be compact, has infected us. And this is the only positive contagion we can thank for.
One of the best records of this 2022, undoubtedly.
26th February 2022