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A journey through space is something the majority of mankind will never get to experience (at least in this era). Yet if one was to easily have the access to do so you'd imagine the choices for fitting and accompanying music would go something like this: Clinst Mansell, Bonobo, Pink Floyd, and yes Dylonious. Centered here on earth, Dylan Bussone, aka Dylonious, is an affecting guitarist and producer from Seattle who mixes just the right amount of space launch samples with articulate beats and electric blues licks. The result is a poignant album of rhetorical kinetic effect perfect for lazy rainy nights.
Sierra Hotel does a few things very well, mainly in the form of cultivating back beats and translucent guitar tracks (acoustic and electric) that ebb and flow akin to the tide of the ocean due to lunar tendencies. "A Journey With Good Intentions" starts things off, a very chill tune in which time is kept admirably by Dylonious' studious acoustic track. Just as the beat and acoustic guitar become comfortable enough the electric lead comes in and serves as the overall wave length for the reminder of the tune and the result is sublime. This format is well established throughout the album and never bores as instruments such as keys and saxophone ("Knock On My Door") take the place of either the acoustic or the electric at choice intervals. Speaking of Bonobo, the second track, "Transits" is a direct remix of Simon Green's track and Dylonous uses Szjerden's vocals to great effect. The surrounding instrumentation is original enough to make the track its own and while I'll stop short of comparing it to the original know that it's worth mentioning which is not something one can say about the litany of remixes that plague the internet today and are quickly becoming music's newest problem.
Much like Bonobo (one of the obvious influences, and for good reason), Sierra Hotel has a mix of vocals and purely instrumental tracks with a tendency towards the latter. If you're into deep chill albums and music that is active without being distracting then these are your jams. "Summer Storm," and "Space Case," two of the stronger tracks from Dylonious' previous EP Fracture return and are slotted in nicely around noteable newcomers "Primavera" and "Rosewood Dreamin'", the latter of which I surmise is aptly named after Mr. Bussone's fretboard. A subtle drum track appears on "Back to the Taxpayers" an enjoyable track I find humorously named due to it being the shortest track on the album. The album ends with "The Return Home" an enjoyable descent of synth and snare drum with DJ scratches and alternating electronic tones out of the left and right channels. The song is a groovy tune to be sure and one that leaves you heading to the toll booth to purchase a return flight.
From the opening acoustic guitar on "A Journey With Good Intentions," until the end of the album, Sierra Hotel exudes waves of relaxing vibes in an uninhibited space. Trying to ultimately give a label to the sort of ambiance the album generates is unfitting and if asked to describe Dylonious as an up and coming artist or producer the answer is a commendable "yes" to both.