Eve Maret - No More Running - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Eve Maret - No More Running

by Joseph Majsterski Rating:6 Release Date:2019-04-26
Eve Maret - No More Running
Eve Maret - No More Running

Nashville musician Eve Maret is walking a funny line, or set of lines, on her second album, No More Running, somewhere between ultra-chill ambience, experimental weirdness, and vaguely pop-flavored electronica. She partially succeeds with this strange brew she's concocted, although the varied sounds make me wonder if they might have worked better as multiple, distinct sets. To be clear, this is actually the Deluxe Edition. The original, cassette release was last August and had only eight tracks. The newer version adds three more tracks, one of which, 'Pink Ray', is among the best on the entire album. Some of the original songs are equally ambitious and inventive, while others are serviceable but uninspired.

Parts of the set are bursting with personality. Opening track 'Sound of Space Between' has a very welcome-to-the-future character, and teaches us about robot love, as does the of a piece 'I Can't Hear What U Don't Say', although the latter has a more predictable synth line that seems to take its cues from vintage Richie Hawtin. 'Letters from Christopher Richard' is a disco conspiracy, like a spy mission inside a smoky nightclub. There are sneaky synths, odd background noises, and a sense of disquiet marbled into the music.

The aforementioned 'Pink Ray' is a sweet, extremely positive tune: "Everything good in this world is yours. Let me show you who you are, what you can do. You can do anything. Let me guide you to your love, to your love. All you could ever want is here." It doesn't get much more upbeat than that. And it's all done in slightly vocoded singing on top of Ray Lynch, Deep-Breakfast-style burbling electronics. Similarly, 'My Own Place' builds slowly, with simple synth melodies looping around and around, but effervesces and rises like bubbles inside a soda bottle.

On the other hand, sections of the album wander off into pure abstraction, where there is nothing but the listener and the machines. There's a sense of layer upon layer of unfolding petals in 'Feminine Intuition', a time-lapse descent into a delicate vortex. 'The Pause Before I Let Go' is nine minutes of endlessly rolling computer melodies, like a maze with no clear end or beginning. And 'Cosmonaut' really is like drifting in the void: wave after wave of deep, hollow pads washing by. 'Many Moons', though also working in that empty expanse, had some minor jazz elements, with ultra slow horns and wind instruments creating a woody smoothness. That track and closer 'Memoriam' both make use of airy vocal textures to ground them with a touch of organic humanity. The title track is heavily loaded with interminable buzzing leads and seasoning lightly with a few robotic vocal lines. It's just barely a nod towards Laurie Anderson, whose older 80s material was likely an inspiration for aspects of the set.

While there is plenty to enjoy here, the set feels a bit too somnolent at times. And I realize that might not be fair when discussing anything in the ambient realm, but there's subtle but perceptible, the difference between relaxing and soporific. And in other places, where the music is more active, it sounds like things we've heard before. Still, there are some fun and distinctive highlights sprinkled throughout that keep it interesting.

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