There are people who seek to capture the physical past and those that seek to capture the more ephemeral (and subjective) thoughts and actions of a time. There are those, like Finders Keepers who uncover Kings under carparks (with eerie regularity). There are others who attempt to recreate the sounds of an era, slavishly or otherwise. Then there are those that propose their own histories.
All music does, to a certain extent, reach back and reconfigure what’s gone before. It’s only natural then that the internet’s ability to order vast amounts of data has lead to a frictionless reconfiguration of everything. Now the trick is what not to be influenced by. Or rather, music has become a subtractive thing.
And I kinda’ like it that way.
Not Waving are ‘Inspired by 80s weird italian electronica, Manuel Gottsching, Peter Bauman, This Heat, Ike Yard.’ Not Waving are also inspired by ‘Remote Viewing‘, a pseudo-science indulged in by the CIA and US Airforce whereby people in one location, using only their minds, attempted to describe the layout of another, distant location. Remote Viewing was being taken seriously at the same time as those influences (rightly) were. Together they form a new history; an intersection of almost mystical yearning for higher powers, and the often brutal soul that was being extracted from mechanised music.
On that level, Not Waving’s début album is locked in.
Battle Mountain is a bleak bossa nova towards the end of the record. The synths, when they arrive, inhabit that reverb-y space that appears accessible only through sensory deprivation. Looped violins — like a million Psychos wailing together — sit underneath the languorous synths as they bob and weave. The whole effect is disquieting in the same way that any massively funded study of the paranormal is disquieting: despite your rationality, you’re never completely sure what they’re going to find.