The second album from two-thirds of unsung post-rock/ambient heroes Labradford blends ambient-drone and MFA-type electronic music. These are astonishingly, hair-raisingly vivid soundscapes—cinematic in a way that makes me wish some big-budget film director would take a risk and use this as a soundtrack. Swirls of synths, Max/MSP programming, and heavily manipulated live instruments. Think CCRMA holding a showcase in an underwater cave, but with more melodic sense. Otherworldly, crisp, tasteful, mesmerizing. Play this now and go under. RIYL Oren Ambarchi, Tim Hecker, Fennesz, all things Kranky. Favorites: 1, 2, 4. No words, no FCCs.|
1. *(14:33)—Gorgeous intro of calmly glitchy ambiance. Evaporates into warm drone before a mist of percussion rolls in and the whole thing builds to one of the best walls of drone/noise you’ll hear all year. Chilly synth pulses enter for the last two minutes.
2. *(4:00)—Deep, ringing, diving-bell tones. Half-insect, half-machine sounds.
3. (10:48)—Relaxed, bubbly, drifting synth loops. Rises and falls very gradually.
4. *(13:16)—Dark, brooding, dissonant intro. Slow, mournful, spaced-out, Sketches of Spain-type jazz trumpet! Builds to heavy, roaring drone. Like watching flames engulf a valley. Astonishing, phenomenal.
5. (3:28)—Droplets of water falling in a cavern. Heavy fog. Fades into the next track.
6. (11:15)—Distorted drone, high-pitched chimes. Soft, fast, fluttering hand drums. New textures drift in——soft, scraping, frantic——and the piece intensifies gradually until it becomes almost overwhelming. Ends with soft drone and faded, distorted electronic pulses.