After The Flood
(æ) 1995
"After The Flood are a loose collective of Seattle musicians, some of whom also
contribute to Lucid. It's all too confusing to sort out all the players; suffice it to say that
they share sensibilities and a liking for non-rock instruments like zither, accordian,
clavinet, harpsichord, keymonica, etc. ATF are miniaturists, making songs as
exquisitely crafted and downscaled as an architect's model of Byzantium. There's no
propulsion to these 22 songs; they waft like expensive perfume in well appointed
drawing rooms. At times the various male and female voices assume a Dead Can
Dance-like overbearingness but the music consisitently satisfies with it's delicate
shapeliness. ATF (and Lucid) sound at once ancient and fresh. I think I've
heard the future of music... or did I dream it?"
 (Dave Segal)
"I know absolutely nothing about the Aeterna label.  All I know is that they put out
some really good stuff.  I’ve raved about Lucid—Baby Labrynthian and Idylls And The
Secret Remain are two of the coolest albums I’ve ever heard, creating lo-fi minimalist
ambient masterpieces.  After The Flood takes the eerie otherworldliness of Lucid’s
music, but makes it more musical and listenable. I only say that because I find After
The Flood’s music much easier to listen to, much more readily apparent.  Lucid’s
music is obtuse and challenging. After The Flood seems almost “radio-friendly” by
comparison. Members of Lucid do show up in After The Flood, which makes me
wonder if this wasn’t some sort of collaboration.

On this album, After The Flood covers a lot of musical terrain, seemingly without any
effort.  “Glissando”, a duet between a guitar and an accordion, is something you’d
listen while strolling through Paris, if the cafes along the Champs-Elysees was
inhabited by ghosts. The same could be said for “Dispell The Nightmare”, except the
location would be smoke-filled jazz clubs along the waterfront.  “Terra, She Said”
combines a loop of what sounds like glass bells shattering with sinister drones and
factories working on overhead.

“Morning Come, Bottle Dry” is the most unsettling track on the disc. A tortured voice
gasps out his last dying breaths, muttering somewhat incoherent phrases and
babblings; it’s almost like an “easy-listening” version of Diamanda Galas’ “Schrei X.”  
“Come Back Smiling” could be right off of “It’ll End In Tears” or a Lycia album.  “Spool”
reminds me Gavin Bryars’ “The Last Days”, where sparse, apprehensive string
arrangements create an air of anxiety and worry.  The album ends with “Grace”, a pop
song that Ivy would have been proud to write.

Like a Lucid album, the only way to do justice would be to describe each track on its
own.  But, like a Lucid album, there are a lot of tracks.  Actually, 22 to be exact,
spanning almost 70 minutes.  The interesting thing is that the content of this album
was recorded between 1989 and 1994.  But all of the songs flow together so well,
there’s an incredible coherence to it all.  In other words, it’s hard to tell if the band
went through phases during those 5 years - all of the songs have a very similar
sound and quality to them all.  And even with 22 tracks, there’s not really a single
piece that’s terrible, or that I’d consider filler material in the extreme.

After The Flood generally takes up the mantle of This Mortal Coil, wedding
melancholy ethereal pieces with an odd, avant-garde slant.  However, like This Mortal
Coil, it’s hard to peg down After The Flood to one musical category.  At times, they’re
an ambient band, other times a pop band, and sometimes a gothic band (but without
all of the pretentions).  I also see some comparisons with a band like Black Tape For
A Blue Girl, but far less theatrical and
pretentious.  I only compare After The Flood with Lucid because they both share a
similar musical ethic.  But for a novice, I’d recommend After The Flood first.

I still don’t know anything about After The Flood, Lucid, or even the label they’re on.
But that only adds to the mystery.  However, perhaps it’s this mystery that makes me
love their music so much."
 (Jason Morehead)
"Regardless of who exactly is behind After The Flood, or even if there's one chief
person in particular coordinating everything, the debut album is a lovely piece of work,
equivalent in it's own way to 4AD's This Mortal Coil and Hope Blister projects, or
Projekt's Black Tape For A Blue Girl, in drawing together a variety of different
performers under one umbrella to create a haunting, ambient-influenced final
release. If nothing else, it could hardly have been conceived as a unified project
unless somebody was extremely dedicated from the start --- recording
dates given are from 1989 to 1994! The CD starts brilliantly with "It's All In The Sun",
with Washington cult art/rock figure Maxine providing guitar and tape music while
multi- instrumentalist Dale Lloyd, as close to being the lead figure on the album as
anyone (and even he doesn't appear on all the songs), adds soft voice and further
orchestrations to create a swirling, mysterious introduction to the album. Tracks
range from brief acoustic fragments to more fully developed songs, some with fairly
detailed arrangements and multiple instruments and/or singers, with everything
definitely pitched to the more shadowy side of things --- even the banjo on
"Abandoned Ship" sounds desolate in context, set against Lloyd's heavily delayed
guitar work. The varied instrumentation cleverly links the album's mood to a number
of traditions; the accordian on "Glissando" calls to mind downbeat French cabaret
songs, while the keening vocals on "Morning Come, Bottle Dry" suggest everything
from Yoko Ono to traditional cries of lament from many areas of the world. If anything,
the chamber folk of such performers as Nick Drake and Tom Rapp could be
considered the basic touchstones, but nothing on
After The Flood is so easily
reduced to such comparisons. Lovely and underappreciated,
After The Flood is well
worth investigating."
 (Ned Raggett)
After The Flood 2
(æ / World Domination) 1998
"This surprisingly good album (ATF2) seems to have been produced by Dale Lloyd,
who collaborates on most of the songs with guest artists such as Windy & Carl,
Labradford, Gordon Sharp (of Cindytalk), etc. It's cohesive and consistently good in
it's measured, layered, 'spacerock meets 4AD' sonic vibe. Reasonably priced for two
discs (one instrumental, one with vocals) in such a lovely package, complete with
lovely full color individual cards."
After the Flood was a recording project that featured an ever-changing rotation of
contributors centering around producer
Dale Lloyd. ATF informally began in 1989 as
a series of basement recordings made between Lloyd and friends. ATF's self titled
debut was later released on cassette in 1991 on Manna, a recording label founded by
Caroline Davenport and Dale Lloyd which operated from 1990 to 1992. The first ATF
release featured contributions from members of My Diva, Sage,
Sky Cries Mary, The
Biota, Forever And A Day, Agra Mecca, Control Freak, Maxine, Vertigo Bus,
and Sound Color. In 1993, Clark Von Trotha and Lloyd formed the
æ label and in
1995 the first ATF release was reissued, remixed and remastered on CD with newly
recorded tracks replacing some of the original ones.

Following the success and warm reception of the first release, in 1996 work began
on a second ATF entitled "After The Flood 2" which  featured contributions from
members of
Cindytalk, Bowery Electric, Windy & Carl, Labradford, Climax Golden
Twins, Lucid, My Diva, and artists Cyndia Pickering who (later changed her name to
Sylvi Alli
), Marc Olsen (Sage, Sky Cries Mary), Warren Defever (His Name Is Alive),
Mark Holt (later changed name to Mark Wand - Sound Color,
Trick Deck), Maxine and
Steve Ball (League Of Crafty Guitarists).

ATF 2 was released in 1998 on the æ label in coordination with the World Domination
label. Originally a contribution from
Robert Fripp was included but removed at the last
minute due to miscommunication and time constraints. After producing the release
and making initial decisions regarding the cover art, Dale Lloyd relinquished further
involvement due to a serious illness and was not able to oversee the final result of
ATF2, therfore the following errors on the liner notes:

* Track 6 on disc one is titled "Perhaps Good, Not Understood" and was mistakenly
omitted. Credits for track 6 are:
Mark Taylor-Canfield - electronics; Dale Lloyd - tape
and treatments; and Bowery Electric - drones. The tracks following "Perhaps Good..."
are numbered accordingly.

* There are spelling errors for
Stuart Arentzen, Cyndia Pickering, and Jeffery Taylor
(who also should have been credited as being with the Climax Golden Twins).

Early in 1999, æ dissolved as a recording label, and there have been no further plans
to produce a third release.