Dreamback – After Before

I’m a huge post rock fan and find myself wallowing in fifteen-minute-long instrumental tracks and loving every minute. What I really enjoy though is when post rock merges with other genres to create something new and exciting. This is exactly what the debut EP from Staffordshire-based producer/musician Jamie Duddy has achieved with his musical project Dreamback.

Drawing on influences including My Bloody Valentine, Ride, Slowdive, Japanese Breakfast and Tame Impala; Dreamback combines lush, dreamy reverberation, fuzzy distortion and shimmering acoustic guitar to create layered soundscapes. Jamie has been sound tracking his dreams since August 2020 then self-releasing the After Before EP in October 2020.

The EP opens on ‘Before’ a wonderfully light song. It floats along on a picked acoustic theme, echoing Nick Drake in parts. In other parts you feel like you are listening to a lost Massive Attack song. A confident and assured way to open any EP.

‘Daze again utilises that acoustic base to build from. This time however Jamie strikes a marked contrast with a fuzzed-out guitar playing a wonderful glide part. Definitely drawing on his inner Kevin Shields. This song showcases Jamie’s understanding of dynamics and scale in a song. Superb.

After the pair of large open sounding songs, we have just heard, ‘Pressure’ turns the whole EP on a penny. We are now in a claustrophobic, eerie sounding place. Everything sounds distant from the drums to the main guitar line. I loved losing myself in this track.

The EP closes on the aptly titled ‘After’. There is something very final, something that’s says ‘this is the end’ about ‘After’. The layered guitar parts that escalate in the verse sections to the steady and sure-footed drums it’s a beautiful conclusion to this EP.

This is a stunning debut and I cannot wait to hear the upcoming album scheduled for release in Spring this year.

After Before is available now via the Dreamback Bandcamp page.

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