"I Could Not Love You More" cover

Album released 2009 on Type (vinyl, CD, digital: 2009) / Blink in the Endless (Bandcamp only: 2016)


Line Of Best Fit

A complaint that can often be leveled at drone music is: "oh but it's just like aural wallpaper!". Rameses III are a group that make drone music, but if I Could Not Love You More is aural wallpaper then it's also an aural wall, which the aural wallpaper is pasted to. And it's also an aural room, and an aural house, and with aural people living aural lives, having aural emotions and aural life events. One can easily underestimate the full-body experience of drone music if they listen on laptop speakers, even headphones; there needs to be space for the sound to occupy and develop in, and you the listener need to set some time aside to let the sound take over.

With this album there's a positive current to all the sounds and tracks, from softly rounded bell notes in 'Across The Lake Is Where My Heart Shines', to the choral vocal-like part of 'We Shall Never Sing Of Sorrow', or the crackling static in 'Cloud Kings', evoking a warm embrace. The track names are earnest and emotive, speaking both of sorrow, peace and comfort ('The Kindness In Letting Go', All Shall Be Well'), and the use of gently chiming acoustic guitar and soft slurred electric throughout are one of the most soothing things you'll ever hear.

It's like the fact of a star existing on the outer arm of the milkyway, turned into song. Like love and happiness, relaxation and well-being, as actual states that don't start and don't end, they just exist, and all you have to do – really, honestly – is reach out. Like loss and loneliness, the enormity of those feelings, moving over our heads to the east on gentle breezes, and we can only look at the shadows they cast, never the reality. Like lap steel on reverb and delay pedals, banjo and acoustic, rough-but-pretty male voices' wordless exhales, field recordings of gulls and the sea, piano, singing bowls, and all the while indefinable mists of ambience drifting through the room you're sat in. Like Mountains' Choral, like a folk Stars Of The Lid, like A Wild Sheep Chase where the narrator sits and waits in that mountain house reading Sherlock Holmes. Like hippy 'good vibes, man' music, only with a deal more empathy and reality involved. Like an escape from Monday and aching feet.

There's a piercing point to this album that really forces you. I only know how it forces me, which is that exquisite plane of self-awareness, sadness, glimmers of hope and acceptance. It may very well be different for each person, but I can't possibly see how someone could not have a strong reaction (whatever that might be) to I Could Not Love You More.

Simon Gurney
Tuesday 27 October 2009

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