Across eight translucent vistas, Rosa Beach Mason and Sean Conrad commune with ephemeral environments, translating lost lands into meditative expanses. Wake carries a gentleness through its intentional acoustics and ethereal voices, but this music carries significant weight. Mason and Conrad aren’t simply levitating through the aural flow, they’re constructing new mystic waves.
Mason’s wordless vocals are the illuminated guideposts throughout Wake; a point of elegiac connection in an engaging, cinematic landscape. Ancient energies move in conjunction with spirited harmonies, evoking a sense of wonder and connection to a greater world. Built from the bones of cathartic and purifying improvisations, this music steels itself with intricate sonic latticework. Wistful atmospheres on pieces like opener “Wished” or the melancholic haze of “Shoreline” turn the lifeblood of this music into sanguine dreams.
“Durance” exists in the liminal spaces of memory and solitude. Left alone with our thoughts, we drift across expressive synthscapes where tiny points of light beckon from afar. Mason’s voice is everywhere, swirling around with emotive grace tempering the heaviness in Conrad’s arrangements. Wake unfolds like a timeless narrative, “Durance” bleeding into the radiant fantasies of “Flame.” Pensive basslines climb through sonic hollows detailed with hammered dulcimer and expressive leads, giving Mason a foundation to encircle. If “Durance” tested our resolve, “Flame” is the reward for making it through.
Wake is a marvel. Mason and Conrad are so in tune with one another that it’s as though these songs came from a singular place. There is beauty and heartache laced between the expansive layers, but the lithe magic in Mason’s voice paints each piece with a forward-looking view where hope and belief grow. Closer “Dimension” lets us into that place, at least for a moment, as Conrad plots a course with acoustic guitar reveries where Mason’s voice is tethered yet floating free. It’s a stunning end to an exceptional album; a further thread to explore in the future. I will stay in these melodic confines for a while, dreaming of the next chapter in this duo’s unfolding story.