“Reflections” is the first album I’ve heard from the multi-instrumentalist Steve Painter. The gentleman, based in Rhodes Island, behind the musical project Dark Sunny Land. Painter plays all the instruments on the six songs of “Reflections” and has also recorded and mixed the album.
“Reflections” is a collection of mystical and spiritual adventures into experimental ambient and drone like soundscapes. Painter builds textured sounds around his effects driven guitar playing. Mixing, drifting, ethereal synths and other worldly sounding percussions, chimes and wyrd gongs, creating an immersive and emotive listening experience. There is a twinge of maudlin melancholy and a touch whimsical sorrow and the sense of inward reflection. Perhaps this is due to being recorded between March and June 2020. However “Reflections” also portrays an uplifting woozy and hazy spiritual vibe. I’m reminded of Steve Hillage’s excellent solo debut album, “Fish Rising” but, without the water.
After my first listen to “Reflections” I wanted to submerge into the world of Dark Sunny Land. I immediately went searching through Bandcamp for the DSL back catalogue. Steve Painter has had albums released by Gulcher Records, One Hand Records and Skatchimawakee Records and I spent a dreamy couple of hours, happily adrift in the soundscapes of Dark Sunny Land, an intriguing and noteworthy back catalogue.
“Reflections” is a brightly glowing gem of an album. On a decent pair of headphones it’s completely engaging and the multiple layers are subtly hypnotic. If your a fan of ambient music, soundscapes, drone sounds or sound art then you really can’t go wrong here.