Dura

Silver/Lawns

Dura's fourth record, Silver/Lawns does not stray much past that golden mean of a thousand gossamer guitar lines tied to one fastening center. But this newest tape, put out on Poland's excellent, Wounded Knife label at once lays bare Dura's structural approach to writing guitar music and obfuscates the entire operation by making compositions so layered and bottomless that it is like being dropped in the middle of the ocean and being asked to find North.

Perhaps no North exists in Dura's compositions. It is tempting to try to get to the center of a track like "Silver". To try and start with a single, oscillating drone and build up from there. To look at all the wisps of guitar lines as ad-hoc additions to a singular base. But to do that would be to put in scaffolding and intention to a structure that is more honeycomb than cathedral. The geometry is sacred but also utilitarian. No one taught a bee how to construct it. Nor could one start making ovals at will. Similarly, in "Silver", as sounds are folded in, a stray guitar line being pulled into the gravitational center, slightly mirrored but always just a shading off creating a ghostly double, once the musical phrasings begin communicating with each other moving closer and further on the undulating sine wave of the mother drone, distinct sounds begin to become difficult to unravel. With "Lawns"... you are on your own. No compass. No horizon. Just a leaf bed with no forest floor.

Dura claims that he takes naps to make music to take naps to. That is pretty brilliant. We can rest assured that Dura is on the job asleep so that we can be asleep on the job. Not that I could ever truly sleep to this. While the effect is always a blood pressure reducing, heart rate slowing sink back into bliss, there is simply too much going on here to lose my attention. Maybe I have a rather reckless view of sleep (I only do it when everything else no longer needs doing), but I do have a pretty strong view of self-reflection while engaged in other activities. And with that, Silver/Lawns is a perfect companion on long walks alone at night, past lawns bathed silver in the moonlight. Another flawless record.

Ryan H. 

May 16th, 2014