Nashville’s Hammock follows up 2017’s critically-acclaimed Mysterium with Universalis, the second installment of a planned three-album series. While Mysterium took listeners down a horizontal path that explored themes of death and grief, Universalis begins a vertical, upward movement back toward the light.
At times, Universalis calls back to Hammock’s 2006 album Raising Your Voice… Trying to Stop an Echo, while also retaining Mysterium’s deep ambient, neoclassical style. The band also finds itself rediscovering some of its earliest influences, including Low and Red House Painters. With Universalis, Hammock invites listeners to lose themselves within its layers of sound, while also embracing the beauty in its raw openness and silence.
To achieve the sound of Universalis, Hammock brought on Francesco Donadello (A Winged Victory for the Sullen, Olafur Arnalds, Johann Johannsson) and Peter Katis (Interpol, Jonsi, The National), who each mixed portions of the album. The album artwork was curated by The Fuel and Lumber Company with drawings by Pete Schulte, and Matt Kidd (Slow Meadow) returned to play piano and provide additional engineering.