Enter the Stream, by Prana Crafter
Suggested by Stuart Emerson
I couldn’t find this album on Amazon Music.
Similarly, there was no sign of it on Spotify either.
Prana Crafter doesn’t have a page on Wikipedia.
Finally, with a sense of foreboding, I tracked it down on YouTube.
Is that a good sign, do you think? Having so little presence on the big social and informational sites? Maybe my Google-Fu was weak, or maybe Prana has moral reasons for eschewing such technologies. If so, he’s likely a better man than I. Nevertheless, I approached my listen with caution.
With, as it turns out, good reason.
There is so much echo plastered all over Enter the Stream, it sounds as if it were recorded in Wookey Hole. Every instrument, every voice, every beat and bar has that distant, faraway feel, which serves to diminish the immediacy and dull the senses to a resonant hum. This is by design, undoubtedly, as the whole album is here to hypnotise and stupefy. If you’d relax, it purrs, things will be just fine.
The guitar sound, again dipped in a bucket of echo, has a Claptonesque tone in places. In others, it surfs a Hawaiian wave, and at times it even saddles up a cowboy western vibe. It’s mainly the focus in the songs that contain a singing component, and the two elements do combine well, albeit indistinctly. The singer, presumably Mr Crafter himself, has the requisite undersold murmur vocal style that you’d expect.
Ultimately, I disliked this album intensely, although that’s a harsh phrase to use on something so shapeless. It’s like saying I hate mist, or I despise dandelions.
Three things cut me to the quick, the first being the fact that four of the eight songs on offer sound like free-form floaty new-age waffle, all “play your feelings” and wow, groovy baby. They’re full of tiny flappings and happy dappy thoughts, with no direction whatsoever, like an orgasm at a butterfly orgy. The second is that the remaining four songs sound pretty much the same as each other, with maybe The Spell offering something marginally more interesting. And finally, the whole album is layered with a droning string overlay which is probably multifaceted and layered and intensely musical but is so unchangeable it takes on a white noise quality, as if Prana’s left the Hoover running in the corner of the room.
Enter the Stream is repetitive, droning, noodle-doodle hippy-bong twaddle. It brings little emotional depth to the table, unless “stupor” is an emotion nowadays. I give it a cursory 2/10, and consign it to the Where Are They Now pile with a cautionary note… if your music is too relaxing, it’ll put people to sleep.