Earth Has Doors
Four years ago Wymond Miles, lead guitar player in San Francisco’s The Fresh & Onlys, began writing solo material thematically based on the concepts of eschatology, anthroposophy, and Gnostic and Hermetic symbolism. Drawing from a vast musical pool of inspiration, including Scott Walker, Robert Wyatt, Arvo Part, and Nikki Sudden amongst others, Earth Has Doors is Miles’ first solo release. Since beginning Miles had basically shelved these songs to attend school, focus on fatherhood, and commit to the demanding schedule of the F&O’s. He earned a degree in humanities with an emphasis on the philosophical implications of the ecological/economic crisis of our times, and that subject matter can be traced throughout his first EP. These songs concisely yet esoterically document the existential crisis of our current epoch — moving from the nothingness of modern materialism, fragmented reductionist thought, and drug escapism to a world imbued with subjectivity and meaning through a new relationship with the Earth and cosmos as alive and full of inherent intelligence.
Wymond describes his early writing process: “For the first time I had a sense of place, and a reverence of humility for my surroundings. I was full of wonder, but I felt very small, and went inward to begin the work of writing.” He elaborates, “Sonically the mood had to reflect the somberness of moving between the existential chaos of my twenties into this new perspective of living … The mysterious hues of the soundscape reflect a sense of curiosity and possibility in the canyons of sound.” Working in his home studio and using 8-track tape (the infamous Tascam 388), Miles performs almost everything on this record: guitars, synths, bass, drums, manipulated tape delay, and vocals. A few friends played with him, guesting on drums (“Hidden Things” and “Earth Has Doors”) and viola (“As the Orchard”), while his wife Sarah sings some harmonies on side A.