This collection of music feels very autumnal — evocative of an early fall day or a misty late fall morning spent alone in the country — and very sincere. This sense of evocation, of muted colors and deep emotions, is one of the album’s greatest strengths, at times making the pieces feel more like symphonic poems written in the distant past — if not, in fact, giving the feeling of having been written over a century ago (the music sometimes recalls images of the kind of pea-soup fog of London often described in Victorian novels).
It is this standing-outside-of-time quality that makes the music here distinct from anything resembling current musical trends: it is obvious that the musicians are searching out something meaningful as they explore the outline of each song. On the whole they create a very strong experimental jazz release that sees the players build off of various directions and ideas taken by one another; the album should interest any person who values absorption into the environment of a recording while listening.
The second foremost characteristic of this music is the level of skill and intelligence of its musicians. The players are very closely recorded, emphasizing the sound properties of their acoustic instruments, with clarinet, double bass, and piano forming together to create a warm, wooden sound within a small aural space. The clarinet explores bluesy, foggy melodies that shift along the background of each piece, while the bass playing is more quiet and restrained.
Dora’s piano playing in particular ranges from minimalistic tonal lines to somber, austere, and beautiful wandering paths of notes (see for example the eerie, windchiming runs of notes at the 1:51, 2:23, and 4:23 marks on the CD’s most beautiful track, the exceptional “Mechanics of Dreams”). Dora shifts from jazz-style playing to classical style arpeggios to great emotional effect; when she begins walking the notes in minor-key arabesques, the music heightens and reaches into profound depths of feeling indeed.