I have an itchy trigger finger, this I know for sure, as I’m often going back through my deleted message folder trying to track down emails from bands I dismissed at a glance, but have now caught my attention and I want to write about. Maybe my resolution for 2013 is to give more time and consideration on music that’s sent to me before deciding whether to pass or post. I did take more time in reading through a message I received from Tobin James Stewart about his project, Carpet of Horses, last week, and I’m glad that I did.
Essentially a solo project that benefits from the contributions of friends like Pink Moth‘s Ray Cammaert, Carpet of Horses/Stewart’s understated compositions swell and flourish from humble, quiet beginnings into finely crafted, ambient pieces. It’s Only Light, his most recent EP, personifies its title perfectly. After the brooding (and brief) introduction “Almagest”, the title track crackles with the hum of electricity, settling into a slow and steady burn that continues on through the collections four other tracks. In his message, Stewart cites a number of influences on his sound and recording style, some of which I can hear on It’s Only Light, but I was reminded of Dean Wareham (Galaxie 500/Luna/Dean & Britta) by the vocals on “Gloss”, and immediately felt a sense of familiarity and comfort in that.
Stewart is originally from Toronto but now calls Berlin home his home base. It’s Only Light is available through Bandcamp, alongside a pair of other recordings, as name-your-price downloads.
Tags: Carpet of Horses