The debut release by Russian ambient imprint Dronarivm is a compact disc re-issue of Celer’s limited-edition cassette Rags of Contentment. They’ve taken pains to showcase Celer at its best in a brightly-illustrated, elongated, three-panelled foldout postcard designed by Rutger Zuydervelt (aka Machinefabriek, who recently released a set of “postcards” with Will Long, live improvisations sent from a tour of the Lowlands), and adorned with the late Danielle Baquet-Long’s accomplished photography.
For a duo whose work could hardly be called prolix, “Pleased to Be in a State of Sour Resplendency” is particularly stripped and minimal. Their sublime drones are typically constructed layer upon layer but both thirty-odd minute tracks on ‘Rags of Contentment’ waft like the faintest, steady breeze, not even enough to rustle a blade of grass. Gradual change in timbre and temperature are more evident on “Things Gone and Still Here,” but just barely so.
Ragas of calm, resignation to luscious ennui and irrepressible resolve. The record apparently brings to mind Nepal and Eno’s Discreet Music for Will Long, and a night spent outdoors between sundown and darkness in Santa Ana, just being there. Carried away by the big meaningful.