Anna-Lynne Williams (aka Lotte Kestner) and Robert Gomez, nearly strangers, left Seattle and Denton and went to Marfa to make a record under the name Ormonde. They platonically arranged their instruments in a tiny adobe house in the most dreamlike town in Texas. They made ten songs. They called it Machine.
When you hear the guitar strum, when you hear Gomez breathe in, when you realize you’re hearing the corners of a small room in a small house, and when William’s voice pours over it all like slow rain, you aren’t surprised when an accordion appears, and when a Mellotron hushes the scene. The tracks are warm, organic, glistening in half-light and shadow, slowly revealing highlight after highlight as you progress through the ten tracks.
There is a cover of Serge and Charlotte Gainsbourg’s Lemon Incest, translated into English and just as sketchily-seductive and as risky as the original.
There is Sudden Bright, inspired by a newspaper story about a raging fire that began in a nearby town, charring acres of land. It prompted one of the album’s greatest lines, “We can watch the end of the world from here“.
And there is album opener Can’t Imagine, as devastating as it is gentle, a note passed back to a fan across the Atlantic who had written Williams, while she was in Marfa, about his time in the military: “I could tell you, for instance, that dead bodies are heavy and difficult to carry.”
Machine is released on 7th August via Hometapes.
Download Ormonde – Can’t Imagine mp3 (from Machine)Follow @madmackerel