Artists of the floating world.
Backed by such pals as Neutral Milk Hotel horn player Scott Spillane and Olivia Tremor Control’s John Fernandes, Dream Boat is the project of Dan Donahue and Page Campbell and this is a quietly fantastic debut record. With not a sitar in sight, Eclipsing is psychedelic, elevating, transcendental, and as pleasingly otherworldly as a period just before returning to full strength after being laid low with illness. In a very nuanced way, several pieces, such as the title track, resemble music made by dub sound-editing as applied to delicate pop-folk music: removing clutter, highlighting voice or instrument.
This is a consistently gorgeous, delicate and shimmering album of nuanced songs that are bright as sunlight on a frosty window and sad as a drawer of old photographs. It is a joy to hear music approached with such clarity, gently embroidered with electronics, synths and strings rather than smothered with unnecessary layers. December releases run the risk of being lost in the shuffle, but Eclipsing doesn’t have a poor moment on it and deserves a place on any Best of 2012 list.