[ORCHESTRAL DREAMSCAPES] You've heard the saying, "A smooth sea never made for a skilled sailor," right? This phrase doesn't seem to apply to the guys of Musée Mécanique, who, on their most recent album, have created a meandering seafaring adventure that explores the nature of dreams versus reality. With careful instrumentation that delicately mimics water—from the swerving slide guitar of "The Lighthouse and the Hourglass" to the undulating acoustics on "A Wish We Spoke"—the quintet's long-awaited second LP sways softly through its 10 tracks, with layers of cello, synth and accordion all anchored by seamless, breathy harmonies. Dashes of theremin, xylophone and bright, hopeful trumpet all pile atop the layers, creating a sound that is at once whimsical and haunting. The constant sway gets a bit sleepy after a while, but when the narrator encounters rocky water, most notably on âThe Open Sea,â the album finally picks up speed. By the time the album reaches its end, it's been an adventure—though not always the most exciting journey, a beautiful, intricately orchestrated one nonetheless.
SEE IT: Musée Mécanique plays Alberta Rose Theatre, 3000 NE Alberta St., with Rauelsson, on Saturday, Sept. 6. 8 pm. $12 advance, $14 day of show. Under 21 permitted with legal guardian.