On his latest as Plankton Wat, Dewey Mahood (Eternal Tapestry, ) pushes towards a haunted, hungered vision of his pastoral psych. Scorched with a lacing of fuzz and a corroded array of synths, Future Times lays down the backdrop to a timeline in which nature has begun to reclaim the monolithic architecture of our times. Mahood’s always had a way of infusing his psychedelia with the soul of the German Progressive crowd, but this time around he’s letting the two impulses stand in harmony more than they ever have in the past. Setting sail for the fields behind Popul Vuh’s compound, the record taps into a fault line hum, yet still catches a bit of wind in the mics. The progressive elements begin to siphon the serenity from the Plankton Wat’s core over the course of the record.
In the past Dewey has used the moniker for works that vibrate in a kind of rarefied air — meditative, mindful, and infused with the green filter of the natural world, but in the times depicted here there’s a new sense of dread in the margins. He does his best to fight it, but on “Dark Cities,” and “Teenage Daydream” the walls seem much closer than they were a moment ago. Its hard not to feel a certain dread for the future, but by the end Dewey doesn’t abandon his positive spirit wholesale. The album battles invisible adversaries of anxiety and finally resets once more to the commune with the earth and air. Amid a swirl of flutes and a bittersweet strum, Plankton Wat breathes easy before the album rests. Each new chapter of Plankton Wat feels like required reading and I can’t say otherwise with Future Times. Dewey’s laid out another stunner for 2021.
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