Words by Sean Moeller, Illustration by Johnnie Cluney, Recording engineered by Julian Dreyer
I'm not familiar with the seasonal differentiations that happen on the West Coast, particularly in California, but it seems that, since Vetiver's Andy Cabic spent some time in his past in North Carolina, that he knows what they should or could be. The sidewalks outside here are emblazoned with the yellowed droppings of the trees getting ready to shut down for the winter, ready to be cold and bare. It's a blanket of half-alive, but mostly dead, ready to dry up and be jumped into by energetic children. We kick them out of our ways with a hop in our step, some delighted acknowledgement of the cyclic nature of weather in places where there are four very distinct seasons. We sort of feel for Cabic as we get the sense that he would live for the autumn. He would breathe in the plumes slithering off the tops of Styrofoam cups of hot chocolate, held tightly by mittened hands. He would close his eyes and savor the smell and the heat and he'd relish the days turning to those where we can break out our sweaters, or that extra layer that we've had to place in the backside of the closet for almost a year now. It's what we're most comfortable in and we can't wait to bundle up just a little bit more. Vetiver music is up to its knees in the sweet apple cider cues of the season, smooth and soothing, warming us straight through with one tiny little gulp. It tumbles down our throats and we're suddenly toasty and well. We've got a tolerable nip in our nose and ears, but it's nothing that we can't handle. He tints his music with the burnt colors - the fried reds of ripe apples, the thick yellows and the twilight oranges of a blood orange - that we associate with the revival sounds of days that end early and chase us indoors just to get away from the white breaths that seem to be talking back to us in the ways that they hover around our heads and mouths. It almost seems as if he writes songs thinking about bonfires and the gatherings that he's had around them. They are the easy rides that friends and lovers taken when they've got nowhere to be in a hurry. They are hugs and smiles that come from arms that mean it, from people who absolutely don't want you to leave them. These are the hugs and smiles that are thought back upon fondly, with a vacant twinkle in the eyes. Then you come to, shake the fog and the memories clear and realize that the fire you'd made has wound itself down to a small smolder and you can't feel your toes. You decide that you're going to go in and see if there's any more hot chocolate or cider left.
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