Whettman Chelmets - A New Place


Released: May 29

Always one for creating complex and ever-changing soundscapes, Whettman Chelmets makes his debut on the Quiet Details with the incredibly heartfelt album A New Place. In his own words, the album is about being on the precipice of fulfillment - that feeling that there is just one thing you need to do, accomplish, or obtain in order to feel fulfilled. But then once it is in your grasp, the feeling remains. It's a concept that I (and many others I'm sure) can understand all too well, especially as I live longer and longer. This mood, this idea, and this feeling are captured all too effortlessly in the music as softly plucked guitars drift in and around the hazy clouds filled with longing that make up the pads and other atmospherics of each track. 

The album is divided into three parts, each one representing a part of the cycle Chelmets lays out his explanation of the album's core concept. The first, "Prelude to a New Place," is an effervescent track that drifts along with a sense of intention and small bits of excitement. Huge swells and rising pads create a sense of forward motion as the plans are laid, the conversations are had, and the decisions are made. There is a hopeful sense about the atmosphere with gentle guitars playing soft and slow patterns of dreamy anticipation. The track immediately following is "A New Place" and it begins with that same sense of giddy anticipation that the previous track ended on. But shortly into the experience, a new sound comes in that gradually grows and clashes with the otherwise bright guitars - a dark sound akin to storm clouds rolling in and a fog surrounding everything, creating a sense of doubt that the this is what was wanted. It ends on the same dark notes, but ones that gradually fade away and lead us to the third act.

The final track starts the cycle all over again with "Longing for a New Place." It rekindles some of the sensations experienced in the first track, but somehow now also a bit forlorn. It begins with a sense of emptiness as a lone voice hums out a somber tone, but slowly evolves and becomes less and less somber as it nears the end. By the end, we have come full circle and are nearly right back where we started. It all makes for a captivating story, one that is real and tangible to so many yet also so mysterious as to be unable to break this cycle. The very structure of the album itself reinforces the cycle as it could just be repeated over and over. If you have time, you may want to just put the album on repeat for a couple of spins. 


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