Withyouathome

…And The Moon Still Shines Quietly

01. Solar
02. Between Dream and Dawn
03. Lunar

[08/01/11]
[Self-released]

Cyclamen frontman/mastermind Hayato Imanishi has always been a purveyor of post-rock, taking his one Dillinger Sikth Plan-esque bedroom project and transforming it into a melding of styles that eventually began to include more and more mellow swarths of ambient reverb and delay. Evidently, this experimentation wasn’t enough for Hayato, opting to write straight-up post-rock under a separate moniker that I recognized from the early days following his music, Withyouathome.

This decision to compartmentalize Hayato’s musical output was a wise move, as the two styles seem to be of polar opposites. Despite the post-rock presence that was always sort of present in Cyclamen, the music was never really this serine or blissful, and to hear disco-beat toting track “Between Dream and Dawn” alongside a song like “Revenge of the Geeks” would have been bizarre and unfitting. Senjyu was no doubt a solid album, but the album’s identity crisis kept it from being great. Hopefully Hayato’s branching off will allow him to write in both chaos and serenity and neither style seem out of place on a single release.

As previously mentioned, Withyouathome sees a much more serine style of music out of Hayato. For instance, the the three-track EP opens with “Solar”, as slow burning track with a minimalistic set-up, opening with slowly arpeggiated chords that are dripping with reverb and delay. A trance-like dreamscape is built in the moments to follow, and layers of atmospheric guitar and Hayato’s soaring falsetto make for a hauntingly catchy and optimistic listening experience.

…And The Moon Still Shines Quietly doesn’t meander. While plenty of post-rockers stare at their feet while tensions build up to a 15+ minute song, Hayato doesn’t waste time making his point, yet still manages to let the songs naturally build upon themselves. Not to say there’s anything wrong with an expansive listening experience, as I greatly enjoy epic soundscapes when done right. Withyouathome however, is a different breed of post-rock than whatever genre stereotype comes to mind. Vocals carry much of the focus, which isn’t exactly commonplace in post-rock. This should open up interest quite a bit in the project for those that find it difficult to get into the genre. Don’t fret if you for some reason you dislike the presence of vocals, though. …And The Moon Still Shines Quietly also includes the instrumental tracks.

Withyouathome certainly seems promising as an outlet for Hayato’s softer side, which has obviously been brewing for quite some time. His approach at atmospheric and ambient rock is pulled off quite well, and I can’t wait to see where else he can take the sound he’s built on …And The Moon Still Shines Quietly.

Withyouathome – …And The Moon Still Shines Quietly gets…

3.5/5

– JR

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