West Kensington by Mary Lattimore & Paul SukeenaRelease date: May 20, 2022
Label: Three Lobed Recordings
Memories, like dreams, are snippets, some longer, some shorter, that crop up as mind images at any point. Ambient music seems to be one of the better vehicles to transform those snippets into sounds and keep them for posterity. After all, otherwise they are bound to fade away, like most things, anyway.
This seems to be the thinking process harpist Mary Lattimore and guitarist Paul Sukeena had when they were creating the six ambient pieces that they present on their latest release West Kensington.
Actually, everything here, from ‘Hundred Dollar Hoagie’ to ‘Garage Wine’ could be either a dream or a memory or a combination of both, yet both Lattimore and Sukeena seem deeply placed within whatever they are, the elongated notes that border on drones created more with ‘regular’ instruments rather than electronics seem to be intended to create a state between dreams and recollection. And they succeed in that intent fully.
Melancholic notes intertwine with, subtle jarring elements, like on ‘Flaming Cherries Jubilee at Antoine’s’, keeping things both interesting and diverse and at the same time relaxing and intense.
Lattimore brings her classical music background to the proceedings the way the compositions here are structured, while Sukeena’s guitar style has served as a backbone for what many have now dubbed as ambient country. Touring with the likes of Steve Gunn and Angel Olsen has certainly helped with that effect.
Essentially, with West Kensington Lattimore and Sukeena enable their listeners to recollect, memorise and enjoy.