Arctic Plateau - On A Sad Sunny Day
Prophecy
Melancholic/Post-Rock
11 songs (1:13:02)
Release year: 2009
Arctic Plateau, Prophecy
Reviewed by Goat

Thank heavens for Prophecy, that’s all I can say after yet another hour and ten minutes spent slackjawed in spaced-out wonder, the one-man unit of Arctic Plateau providing an exploration of melancholic Rock that’s hard to get off your mind. Initial perusals were unflattering – after all, tracks vary between three and twenty-one minutes long (thankfully mostly silent) and the album length seemed a good thirty minutes too much – but the more time you spend with On A Sad Sunny Day, the more you get out of it. That’s not to say that this album is especially amazing, but the overall effect of giving yourself totally over to it and absorbing each shade of light that its composer has given it makes it a fascinating piece of music.

To paraphrase a line from the promotional guff: the first lyrics to come from Gianluca Divirgellio’s mouth are ‘I’m so inspired by the sadness that I have found the joy’ and the dreamy nature of the music that follows is directly affected by this, the finding of joy in the deepest of melancholy. The screams of ‘still alive!’ that bring that initial track to a close are a strangely euphoric burst of extremity in an otherwise mellow album, and they stick with you as you listen through the Floydy likes of On A Sad Sunny Day, gentle Prog and emotional Post-Rock mixing together almost flawlessly. I say almost, because as much as he is going for the big tug at the heartstrings Gianluca seems happy to try and write songs, something which, ironically enough, succeeds even though the songs themselves aren’t that special, being far too repetitive. Credit where credit is due, however, Gianluca has hacked into some special stream of melancholy and injected it into On A Sad Sunny Day, resulting in one of those albums that you don’t so much listen to as have on in the background, whilst you gloomily assess your life, everything from your past and current loves to the shapes of clouds in the sky against the sunset.

Yes, it’s exactly THAT sort of album, the kind of thing you either are in the mood for or aren’t. Calling this ‘mood music’ is completely inadequate and insufficient – the mere fact that there are tracks present called things like Iceberg Shoegaze should let you know exactly if this is what you’re looking for or not. If you’re the type of person that miserably shuffles through the weekly reviews here, looking for something that perfectly matches your grumpy mood, then this will suit you just fine, and admittedly this caught me in a melancholic state of mind, as you might have guessed from the initial words of this review. Coming back to it when more cheerful, however, it was less of an experience, and you might well be better off remembering the name rather than adding this to your wedding list.

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Killing Songs :
Alive, Coldream
Goat quoted 70 / 100
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