EP Review – Terracotta Ladder by Docks (2019) (Hidden Bay Records)



Slip lyrics/vocals into the slowcore aesthetic and there is always the chance that chillwave emerges. Too much of that and you will spend the rest of your days adding melancholic intonations to the word ‘dude’ and explaining to all and sundry that a ‘middle class upbring can still be hard,…dude’.

Take all such lyrical context out of the equation and add the beauty of distant jangled riffs and slowcore becomes altogether more beckoning and sumptuous in atmosphere.

Toulouse (France) duo Docks reveal themselves to be the masters of such beautiful textures, with tracks like Bitter Flags (see above), Canopy and Rocher Massue (see below) imbuing full instrumentals with atmospheres that develop intra track and imbue more meaning, more life, more substance than most lyrics ever could.

Of course Docks style slowcore will not be the choice for many who might prefer the immediate gratification of  three minutes guitar janglers. However, for those prepared to invest time to let these tracks ferment in the imagination, the rewards will be long lasting.

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