For fifteen years, Devon Church plied his craft as one half of the ambient-electronic outfit EXITMUSIC. Rarely did he assume the position as the person with the mic, but he did orchestrate much of the duo’s cinematic soundscapes. Following his and Aleksa Palladino’s announcement they getting a divorce and, thus, bringing an end to one of the great indie bands of the past decade-plus, Church drowned himself in his solo work. Unlike others in his position, he sought to find the light in the darkness and start anew, which he reveals in his debut album.

We Are Inextricable is an incredibly stunning and gorgeous album. He turns melancholy into a rapturous experience with the big, bold, cinematic atmospheres and his honest words. The soul-crushing “Curses” grows into a jaw-dropping, choral crescendo. Through the flood of synths, keys, and percussion, he remembers the touch and beauty of his former lover. The wistful and dreamy title track is akin to floating effortlessly at 20,000 feet and watching the world move below. Musical utopia, though, is discovered on “Chamomile”, which is a breathtaking, synth-pop hymn. This Garden of Eden exists in the tender melodies, Church’s weathered baritone, and his words:

“Life is for the living,
And you’re meant to be free.”

Although EXITMUSIC is no more, a part of Church still holds on to that previous project, as heard on “Your Father’s House” and “A Wave On Land”. The former is a euphoric and dazzling piece of ambient electronic while the latter’s oceanic vibes create the feeling of eternal bliss. We Are Inextricable, however, is entirely Church. His lyricism on “Pass Through My Heart” is dark, gripping, and intimate. As he reveals the pain that lingers within him, the music soars into a rousing climax. On the album’s closer, the heavenly and breathtaking “Sky Save For Us”, Church seeks a chance to relive one finale moment. A chance to say goodbye. However, this will not be his swan song because an album as beautiful as We Are Inextricable deserves an encore.

We Are Inextricable is out via felte, and it is available on Bandcamp and iTunes.

To review the first 25 of our Favorite Albums of 2018, click here.

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