Free and legal MP3: Rewilding (homespun instrumental)

The overall effect is a singular type of unsophisticated sophistication—it feels both homespun and skillfully assembled.

“Home Shore Highlights” – Rewilding

The oddly inviting instrumental “Home Shore Highlights” intermingles the organic and the electronic with idiosyncratic aplomb. Listen, for instance, to how the synthesizer takes the lead at some moments, a homely glockenspiel at others. The overall effect is a singular type of unsophisticated sophistication—it feels both homespun and skillfully assembled. On the one hand, the song is little more than a variety of recurring, related melodies on top of an unhurried tropical beat; on the other hand, things feel ongoingly off-kilter and endearing. As different sounds take turns in the spotlight, one consistent underlying element is the hands-on percussion, mixed with a bashy spaciousness that adds three-dimensionality to the aural landscape.

What might be the song’s signature moment, if not an actual hook, is that repeating place in the unfolding melody in which we get an even-tempoed march up the scale: a full, eight-note ascent that, in fact, occurs in pairs—when it happens once, it happens again a few seconds later (first at 0:43/0:51). Once this progression gets in your head, you tend to anticipate it in a variety of spots in which it doesn’t show itself. This makes its final appearance, at 3:04/3:12, seem particularly gratifying

“Home Shore Highlights” is the first single available from Rain Patch, the second Rewilding album, which is due out in April. Rewilding is masterminded by the Philadelphia-based musician Jake McFee, who wrote and recorded the bulk of the album in Glacier Bay, Alaska, where he decamped for a few summers starting in 2017.

You can pre-order the album (digital, vinyl, cassette) via Bandcamp.

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