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Hammock Silencia album cover
4.23 | 32 ratings | 2 reviews | 24% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
prog rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 2019

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Circular as Our Way (7:00)
2. Silencia (5:09)
3. When It Hurts to Remember (6:16)
4. Afraid to Forget (7:08)
5. Saudade (5:18)
6. In the Shattering of Things (5:51)
7. We Try to Make Sense of It All (3:56)
8. Slowly You Dissolve (5:18)
9. Fascinans (4:16)
10. Life Is Life (3:48)
11. Without Form and Void (8:05)

Total Time 62:05

Line-up / Musicians

- Marc Byrd / composer, performer & producer
- Andrew Thompson / composer, performer & producer

Note : The actual instrumentation could not be fully confirmed at this moment

Releases information

Artwork: Pete Schulte

CD Hammock Music ‎- HMK-026CD (2019, US)

2LP Self-released (2019, US)

Digital album

Thanks to TCat for the addition
and to projeKct for the last updates
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HAMMOCK Silencia ratings distribution

(32 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of progressive rock music(24%)
Excellent addition to any prog rock music collection(21%)
Good, but non-essential (28%)
Collectors/fans only (21%)
Poor. Only for completionists (7%)

HAMMOCK Silencia reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by TCat
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
5 stars Hammock, a post/math rock progressive band from Nashville, is, at it's core, made up of the duo of guitarists Marc Byrd and Andrew Thompson, both originally from the band "Common Children". The duo first got together to do informal recordings and had no intention on releasing these recordings, at first anyway. But when their collection reached 40 recordings, they decided to form Hammock. They released their first 2 albums in 2005 along with an EP in the same year. In 2007, they gave their first live performance to honor an artistic collaboration between Jonsi Birgisson (Sigur Ros) and Alex Somers (a graphic designer) for the pair's first exhibition outside of Iceland.

In November of 2019, the duo released their 12th full length album, "Silencia". Over the years, they have incorporated different artists and orchestras/choirs in several of their albums. Their music is considered post rock, but they actually center their style of music around the more ambient aspect of the sub-genre. That is also the case with this album, which also features the 20-piece Budapest Art Choir. "Silencia" makes up the final part of a trilogy of albums (consisting of "Mysterium", "Universalis" and this one "Silencia") that is made up of music inspired by the works of Arvo Part and Georgy Sviridov and the American poet Li Young Li. According to Byrd, "Mysterium was about a shattering. Universalis, the trilogy's second record, was an attempt to put things back together, and Silencia reflects a quiet resolution of knowing this is what life is. You have to live in the midst of both."

Right from the beginning, the album begins with a slow, mostly orchestral build. The strings and muted horns work together on a long, slow crescendo which reaches it's peak about halfway through and then decrescendos back to the end. It's slow and pensive, never reaching a level of loudness or heaviness, just a swell of the music, peaceful and lovely. "Silencia" makes a soft, layered yet quiet beginning, with the very soft strains of an almost vocal quality deep in the background. A cello comes in and takes the lead over the textured background. The music is slow, serene and reflective, a feeling of resolution. By giving this music your attention, you will find yourself lost inside of its beauty. There are layers of soft strings that join in later. These textured orchestral parts of strings and horns were orchestrated by conductor and violinist Viktor Orri Amason in Hungary, where the instruments were tracked using 30 vintage microphones. "When it Hurts to Remember" continues this soft and flowing sound, letting the orchestra ebb and flow softly along with a light, airy drone that uses variable tones swirling around underneath. There is a slight crescendo as the track moves peacefully forward. Think of Sigur Ros without the vocals and with less harshness or sudden dynamic changes, the dynamics are slow and gradual, left to build more naturally.

"Afraid to Forget" is the first point in which the choir becomes evident as their soft harmonies move in slowly like the layered drones, sounding like an angelic choir singing far off in the distance. As they repeat a 8 note motif of sustained notes. Low string bass finally comes in and soon after, the strings echo the same motif along with the choir, and the music slowly builds. If you are listening closely, the music will penetrate your soul. After 5 minutes, the music backs away from the motif as it uses sustained notes to bridge to a viola solo, again playing slowly and pensively.

It is difficult to describe adequately as some tracks and passages can defy description, the only way to understand them is to experience them. The entire album moves in this manner, beautiful orchestral swells and textural passages. Occasional melodies come out of the textured layers. The music is exactly what they purport it to be, the exploration of the ambient and quiet side of post rock music. It is all well developed and appropriate for relaxation, but it also has a lot of compositional value to it also, not just meandering sounds, but lovely orchestral arrangements with the quietness of subtle guitar, violin and piano motifs and textures. It's all quite ethereal, dreamy and lovely, probably the best ambient album I've heard all year. That's all you need to expect here, no loud noise or heavily layered climaxes, just lush and peaceful sound.

Review by BrufordFreak
COLLABORATOR Heavy Prog & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
5 stars I totally resonate with the word "resolution" that I've seen used to describe the music of this album; the grieving process that began with 2017's Mysterium must be complete (as complete as grieving ever gets) for that is the feeling one comes away with after hearing this collection of calm, soothing songs. And we, the public, are so blessed for Marc Byrd's choice to process his grief through his amazing music. As I listen to this absolutely gorgeous music, I am bathed in feelings of peace, of relief, of completion and readiness for the journey to pick up and start again, anew, refreshed, after a much needed long and healing delay. Would that all humans were able to find such means to process their emotional challenges; it is a flaw in the human design that so few ever reach the heights of artistic perfection that Marc and Andrew do; it is a gift that some of us get to experience their artful expression.

As other reviewers have noted, this music may be more accurately categorized as ambient or neo-classical though the Post Rock label works, too.

1. "Circular As Our Way" (7:00) strings, muted horns, voices at the end (14/15)

2. "Silencia" (5:09) slow and unevolving, it's about constancy. And backdrop. (8.5/10)

3. "When It Hurts to Remember" (6:16) very much like a BERSARIN QUARTETT song; very little development or change. (8.5/10)

4. "Afraid to Forget" (7:08) haunting female choir and organ and, later, strings, all repeating the same Inception/Harry Potter-like theme. Big shift for the final two minutes. (13.5/15)

5. "Saudade" (5:18) horns, strings, and distant choir carrying "arpeggio" of three descending "chords" for five minutes with varying volume, dynamic, and with occasional addition of other solo instrument like cello, synth "underwater bleep" and others. (9/10)

6. "In the Shattering of Things" (5:51) a song that affirms how amazingly evocative music can be. Stunningly gorgeous. A song that pierces me to the core. (10/10)

7. "We Try to Make Sense of It All" (3:56) Piano! and then, Cello! Multiple strings! A modern day chamber quintet masterpiece. With choir of angels! Wow! (10/10)

8. "Slowly You Dissolve" (5:18) slowly shifting low chords with heavily treated electric guitar harmonics and single notes played, one slowly decaying note at a time, over the top almost ROBIN GUTHRIE-like. Strings join in toward the end of the third minute and begin to take the fore. Brilliant. (8.75/10)

9. "Fascinans" (4:16) slow, murky horn arpeggio joined by synth/strings to expand each "note" into a chord and then add embellishments from individual stringed instruments. Beautiful like a lullaby for mermaids. Effected choir is added to the mix in the fourth minute to back the viola and cello as they sing the lead melody. (9/10)

10. "Life is Life" (3:48) low end horns muted and synth washed open this one while whispery things play about at the other end. Then the treble register intensifies as the Icarus-flighty things soar and dissolve. Another piece of emotive genius. (9.5/10)

11. "Without Form and Void" (8:05) quite heavenly--not unlike some of the gentler, more slowly scored work of BATTLESTATIONS, DAVID DARLING or New Age masters like STEVE ROACH. (13.5/15)

Total Time: 62:05

Songs that sound like they could have come from soundtracks by HANS ZIMMER or CLINT MANSELL or albums by Post Rock bands like ULVER, THE BERSARIN QUARTETT, JAKOB, or GODSPEED YOU! BLACK EMPEROR.

Five stars; a minor masterpiece of progressive rock music and a masterpiece of neoclassical/ambient Post Rock music.

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