Matthew Cardinal’s “murmuring/warmth” is a tranquil, drifting escape composed for The Art of Winter, intended to be played while you explore the art on these pages.
Learn more about murmuring/warmth
Starting as a curious experiment recreating natural sounds of the season, Matthew Cardinal’s “murmuring/warmth” is a tranquil, drifting escape that invites the listener to experience a winter night under a dark northern sky. Using recording equipment to capture seasonal sounds—the crunch of walking in snow, the crackle of wood burning, the flare of a match being struck, along with murmuring voices and clinking glasses—the song envelops the listener in the comforting, familiar sounds of warmth and friendship, gathering together. “murmuring/warmth” calls to mind a suggestive appreciation for the simple beauty of a prairie winter landscape no matter the conditions this long, frosty season might bring.
Exploring the experience of walking in the snow at night as inspiration, Cardinal examines the pleasant, relaxed feelings of keeping warm with layers, a fire and the positive energy of good company. His intention is to capture the purity of winter revelry in an aural space without pretense. Cardinal transports the listener through the song’s dreamlike reflection.
With less layering and fewer instruments, “murmuring/warmth” focuses on the gentle acoustic sounds of piano and guitar, with sweet highlights of ambient ear candy from a modular synthesizer. All of these elements coalesce to tell the story of an experience every Albertan can relate to: feeling drawn to warmth wherever you find it, even at the heart of winter. Near the end of the track we are greeted with an airy, ‘shimmering’ effect that floats over the ambient composition, meant to render the colorful dance of the northern lights: a bright contrast to the whites of a winter landscape.
Cardinal encourages listeners to develop their own interpretations of the song, in the shape of their unique, personal winter experience.
About Matthew Cardinal
Matthew Cardinal is an Indigenous musician and sound designer based in amiskwaciy (Edmonton, AB). He uses a variety of synthesizers and samplers to create melodic and delicate music that shifts from drones and lullabies to sparkling beats and walls of sound.