Sun Airway - Soft Fall
Sun Airway provide a rather accurate impression of their sound without even playing a note; so suited is their title that you’re probably better off imagining the music yourself. Their glimmering, spacious pop music incites imagery of summer while use of electronic layering gives their work a feeling of expansive freedom. After the enjoyable but unspectacular debut Nocturne Of Exploded Chandelier, it would have been easy to predict the follow up a more refined, mature affair. Unfortunately, Soft Fall succeeds and fails in equal measure, frustrating the listener with hints of inspired brilliance amongst consistent mediocrity. Musically, Sun Airway always created something of an atmosphere; their bleary, hallucinatory noise continues to impress but does little to compensate for the consistently weak song writing.
Among the most jarring decrements of Soft Fall are the vocals where Jon Barthmus' flaccid, airy voice meanders, leaving choruses with a glazed over disinterest. Stand out tracks ‘Symphony In White No. 2’ and ‘New Movements’ best demonstrate the band's inventive and occasionally brilliant use of musical hooks; Strings and brass stray in and out of the mix beautifully complementing the shimmering synth, even Barthmus’ voice sounds just right. Moments like this however are all too rare, leaving the hammy lyrics and recycled ideas to bring down what should have been a storming sophomore effort.