Album Review: This Is a Process of a Still Life

This Is a Process of a Still Life – self-titled (Firefly Sessions, 2004)

[Note: this review is part of the Bad at Listening series.]

This is the first review of this series and I’m already breaking a rule, in that I’ve listened to this one before . . . it was in my actual music collection pile. I got it at the first stop of my 2004 “national tour,” or more accurately my 2004 “extremely long and expensive road trip.” Ah, I can picture it now . . . late July, Missoula Montana. A hot night, an unregulated all-ages club: the Area 5 Art Gallery (which is long gone). Kids at a show drinking and smoking, a four-band bill headlined by veggie bus hippies from the east coast. What could be better?

This Is a Process of a Still Life were second to last, and they were great. Their set was full of long, intricately composed instrumentals, performed expertly by five dudes with energy and stamina, not unlike hardcore kids taking up jazz. I remember thinking they were a lot like Wow and Flutter. I think it’s called post rock.

This is a Process of a Still Life – No Memory of the Airshow

This recording represents them well, though perhaps mellower. “Shimmering.” There’s a word. The sound of clean guitars through delay pedals, Rhodes piano — suites more than songs, building peaks and valleys, but never at extremes. Also, there’s backwards stuff. I love backwards stuff. And, the songs are just really pretty, and it helps that the recording is excellent (it was produced by Portland’s Rob Bartleson).

These guys are still around, post-lineup changes and moving from Missoula to Seattle. They also changed their name to SCRIPTURES: http://www.myspace.com/thisisaprocess

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