Dan Caine is ambient/post-rock musician from Merseyside, England. A pioneer in the movement, Caine uses powerful, layered guitar melodies to create an atmosphere of an intense range of thought and emotion as he explores the depths of the human psyche. His music is a free-flow of subconscious urge and instinct; a deep dive into the unhindered world of the Id. Much like a fine wine, these meditative works expose more and more of their depth with each listen, and like a mood ring, they morph and change to reflect the state of the listener perceiving them. Caine’s music is also richly melodic and is layered with vibrant textures, created primarily from his collection of guitars, producing brooding atmospheres and serene sonic landscapes.
The Jackson Pollock of ambient post-rock, Caine is a master of breaking music down to its most basic elements and arranging them in a work of abstract purity. This enables the listener to explore their own connections to the sound and engage with the piece less as a listener, and more as an observer of aural art. His music is broad and guiding, yet flexible and undemanding, allowing the observer space with which to process their own humanity within it.
Dan Caine, born in 1988 in Wirral, England, first picked up the guitar at age 15, inspired by a lot of alternative music, as well as his own father who played the classical guitar. He has had no formal musical training or tutoring, save for being taught a few basic chords from his father. He realized early on that making music was a great way of expressing himself and began recording his experimentations as a hobby. Eventually, in 2013, he published his first album, “Ephemeris”, which was a collection of some of his best ambient pieces that he had made of over the previous years. Since then, his music has evolved and has primarily drawn on influences from ambient, post-rock and new-age music.
NAAL is the surrealist, drone/rock project of Chicago native Dave Mantel. Characterized by a sonic journey taken between more traditional instrumental post-rock, and the fringe elements of ambient, noise, drone, and field recordings, NAAL is a project that wanders freely between elements of all of those genres, while juxtaposing their individual elements to create a unique sonic palate.
Formed in 2013 with the release of the debut project titled Wilderlands, NAAL has released 4 EP's, with a debut full-length announced for a 2017 release. Each of the past three releases, 2014’s “Compass” and “Chaos Monsters,” and 2015’s “TIME” EP, charted as best-sellers on Bandcamp. Beyond his recordings, NAAL has begun to bring a live show audio/visual experience that focuses on the mellower side of the project. Long, texturally complex soundscapes are complimented by an ambient visual experience aimed at exploring dark, metaphysical and surrealist themes.
A703 is a slow, intricate walk through several years worth of dark, complicated emotional landscapes, compiled together to create a listening experience that will both relax and challenge the listener. The slow drones and complex textures give voice to both a deep sadness, and a deep hope. Of the new album, Mantel says, “There's an idea in Japanese that has captured me- 'mono no aware'- which is an awareness of the impermanence of everything. But, at the same time, not letting that overwhelm or immobilize you. It's a gentle sadness of things. But that idea of simple awareness is not where I want this story to end... That is the concept for the album.”
The first full length album from NAAL, A703’s soundscapes are charged with the weight of their author's own emotional darkness. This album is unlike NAAL's past releases in both the volume of work, and the compositional and instrumental restraint involved in the process. Leaving behind the more traditional post-rock vibe of the project's previous releases, A703 fully embraces the “drone” side of the so called “drone/rock” genre Mantel has coined.
The slow moving chord structures made up of layers of guitar and synthesizer textures, combined with bits of field recordings taken over the course of some of these aforementioned defining emotional moments, create ambient and droning atmospheres that are at once intricately complex and utterly benign. Although these 7 tracks are, for their author, ultimately about mortality and the fleetingness of the temporal, in the depth of the music, there seems to be a glimmer of light. In the end, Mantel says, the interpretation remains up to the listener, “That's the beautiful thing about making the kind of music I make. I can write something out of the deepest feelings of sadness and pain, and someone can listen to those same lines and feel hope in the middle of that. That's really all I want from this project. Yes, there is sadness, there is death. But I have to believe that there is also life.” A703 releases on June 30th, digitally everywhere and physically at NaalMusic.com
Dan Caine is a guitarist from Merseyside, UK, who creates atmospheric, soulful and emotive ambient & post-rock music. "Timelessness" is a collaborative album with Musicformessier, the alias of the talented Hungarian musician István Csarnogurszky. The album was released September 26th 2016 , and according to Wagner Hertzog at Merchants of Ai "It’s a marvellous journey, and a splendid work of art. The delicate sonorous poetry and the serene appreciative melodies we found on this album certainly make Timelessness one of the best guitar driven atmospheric albums of the year."
Crafting a concept album is an incredibly difficult task. Tying together a cohesive narrative across a record’s worth of songs isn’t just daunting, it’s an endeavour that even some of the industry’s finest have failed to do memorably. This task, however, becomes notably more difficult when you’re dealing in the abstract via instrumental soundscapes. That is what Chronotope Project, the moniker of composer Jeffrey Ericson Allen, attempts to do with his latest project, ‘Ovum.’
NAAL is an eclectic music project led by Chicago composer Dave Mantel. This talented musician has a true passion for great melodies and haunting musical textures. His blend of ambient, shoegaze and experimental drone music feels personal and unique, echoing the work of artists such as Slowdive, Boards of Canada or Sigur Ros, just to mention a few.