Forest Robots – Times When I Know You’ll Watch They Sky – Review

Forest Robots - Times When I Know You’ll Watch They SkyForest Robots is the brainchild of Francisco Dominguez. After amassing a collection of visual content documenting the majesty of nature, Dominguez decided to sync electronic music that he composed with the images, primarily for the purpose of educating his daughter about the beauty and importance of the natural world, and our place in it; this project evolved into Forest Robots. Times When I Know You’ll Watch The Sky is his third record, and with the corresponding short film All Things Grow Faint With Great Adorn In Autumn, Dominguez has cemented his art, firmly creating a foundation while also continuing to grow and expand.

Forest Robots – Times When I Know You’ll Watch They Sky

“Just Before Nightfall in the Forest” is the opening track. Ambient textures give way to a trance-like synth melody, supported by electronic drums helping to drive the beat. The song alternates between a full sonic arrangement and beat breaks, an effective way to create variety in the production. The melodies and rhythms are meditative, allowing the listener to easily get lost in the sound, similarly to getting lost in nature.

Hand drums and synths begin the second song on the record, “Everything Under the Light of the Full Moon”, creating continuity with the previous song by using similar sonic textures. Musically the song captures the magic suggested by the title, allowing the listener to imagine the full moonlight illuminating a surreal nighttime scene.

The songs on the record are incomplete without the accompanying short film. The pairing of auditory and visual content is what makes this unique piece of art feel whole. Filled with sequences of the natural world, all various kinds of flora & fauna, and surrealistic images of nature and humans, the film is truly Dominguez’ artistic statement; the music is the finishing touch, the element that ties everything together.

On “In The Late Autumn Afternoon Rainstorm” the mood is hopeful, the music a bit more uptempo. The beat of the song almost emulates a light jog through the forest during a drizzle. The addition of rain sounds completes the effect, as do the forest visuals during this part of the film.

“Deep In The Milky Way Spectrum” finds the vibe changing, with a more atmospheric, space-influenced sound that matches the title. The listener effortlessly feels transported through the cosmos, a reminder that the “natural world” is far more than just our planet. Neon body paint adorns the dancers in this section of the short film; building more of a connection with a futuristic, space theme. Despite the inclusion of this theme, the listener never loses a sense of being fully connected with nature, “digital” elements are used in analog ways to create something very organic feeling.

The title track is a brooding, ominous soundscape that takes its time developing. Somewhere in between the forest and the future, the song’s uneasy feeling encapsulates the vast nature of the open sky. The title and general vibe of the song are appropriate in that sense, because musically the song hinges between analog and digital, while the sky itself is the portal to the unimaginable expanse of space, the hinge between our world and the rest of existence.

Forest Robots’ third record and corresponding short film are a beautiful statement about the value of the natural world. The listener comes away with a renewed sense that they are not an observer of nature, but simply another element within the vastness of existence. This connection is essential to the continued survival and sustainability of our natural world, and as such we all owe Dominguez a debt of gratitude for helping us reconnect with our true nature.

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