Our first album, when we were calling ourselves Embracing the Glass. Recorded live in the studio (there's a percussion overdub on "Great Lakes Chain Gang").
released October 15, 2002
Jeff Sampson: voices
Sean Carroll: guitar; guitar synth; effects
"Languid harmonies generated by synthesizers, guitar and voice. Electronic textures unfurl and hang like translucent fogs, sighing and indulging in elongated pulsations. The voices drift with ghostly demeanor, generating an organic flavor amid the seesawing ambience."
"Sampson produces an impressively wide variety of sounds; he can hum, croon, moan, chant like a Tibetan monk, chant like a Western monk, or sing high counter-tenor. And in the weirdly juxtaposed “Great Lakes Chain Gang,” he sounds like an improbable white Aborigine singing the blues."
(Eclectic Earwig Music)
"The album itself is moody but never oppressive and is not really what I would call abstract, either. It’s sparse and minimal, but also warm, human, and organic, despite all the electronics."
(Wind and Wire)
Creativity, desire, open-minded attitude, and opportunity all came together at a Central Massachusetts open mic in the summer of 2001. Jeff had just listened to Sean play a set of guitar-based soundscapes and asked him if he’d like to try doing the same with voice added. The two went back on stage and proceeded to stun the audience and themselves with vocal melodies floating on, and entwining with, gossamer clouds of looped and layered electric guitar.
10+ years later, they are still weaving dreamy, haunting melodies with atmospheric soundscapes.
Both musicians have been playing committedly since their late teens. Both bring playing and listening to left-of-center rock and chamber music to this meeting place of spiritual, ethereal sounds – which is not the contradiction it may seem at first, as the willingness to experiment and explore is a foundation of each.
The music Jeff Sampson and Sean Carroll create is lush and minimal; melodic and drone-like; pastoral and edgey. It places a travel mat in the minds of listeners, coaxing them to go wherever one’s thoughts need take them – wherever their emotional state need be. Over the years, the duo has explored sonic and emotional territory that falls under many different “spirits” – from aboriginal to eastern orthodox, from caverns to lofty peaks, from breeze-filled summer fields to close encounters with introspection.
Sampson – Carroll’s music says many different things to many different people. It’s music from and to the collective heart. The duo acknowledges that everyone who, and everything that, has come before influences what is. They are merely a serendipitous channel.