The title of Alex Body’s sixth release, No Event, is actually an apt description of my first impression of the album. After a string of increasingly better releases, No Event showcases a more confident artist, one willing to re-explore many of the sounds and textures that have comprised previous efforts. But the album is definitely a grower.
“Open Season” sits atop the album and sets the tone for the nine tracks that follow with organ drones from a church revival on laudanum, and Body singing about the sun setting and rain falling. The song closes with a nice flourish too: a chorus of multi-tracked Bodys like a gospel choir on the verge of passing out.
No Event is introspective and reflective. Body quietly circles around tragedy and pain in measured, glitchy, programmed steps. However, the path is opaque.
Two of the longer songs focus on specific things without giving us concrete details. “Electric Feeling Photograph” continues to direct us back to a photograph, though the song appears to be more about the on-going battle between the artifacts (like pictures), memory and now, digital files; there is still this vague sense of loss and anguish one might have looking at a picture of an ex or a deceased loved one. This is followed by one of Body’s strongest ballads to date, “Bimini Road.”
Another specific location, an underwater rock formation in the Bahamas, is the subject and metaphor of the fourth track. Like the centuries-old road swallowed up by the Atlantic, “Bimini Road” is a reflection on the hopelessness of struggling against fate and nature. It never gets too heavy, though—a tinkling key line sounding like a distant steel drum and electronic wheezes that sound like sea birds keep the song wistful instead of downright depressing.