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4.5 out of 5 stars14
4.5 out of 5 stars
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Minimalist techno? Possibly/maybe. I wouldn't call it that
myself. Nicolas Jaar's debut album 'Space Is The Only Noise'
doesn't fit tidily into any particular box truth-be-told and
that is why it sustained both my interest and admiration.
Each of the 14 pieces in the collection sort-of reach out
and tap you on the shoulder to announce their fragile presence.
Two of the tracks ('Sunflower' and 'Trace') are less than a
minute long but nothing ever really overstays its welcome.

Mr Jaar stiches sound together into something resembling a
sonic patchwork quilt. There is logic and order at work in
the compositional structures but there is also a little chaos
mixed in for good measure just to keep us on our toes.

Some of the pieces have a coherent rhythmic narrative.
'Variations' is a delightful invention which had my toes
tapping despite themselves. A pinch of tribal; a dash of
folk; a soupcon of fractured falsetto soul. Wonderfully
weird yet also curiously emotionally affecting.

The clicks and clatters; the ghost-rider reverb guitar and
the half-heard whispered words of 'Too Many Kids In The Dust'
is another piece of beguiling musical voodoo, not unlike some
of the tortured and ambiguous sound-dramas of Tom Waits.

The subdued latin beats and bubbling underwater chords of
'Keep Me There' conjure up a spooky cheek-to-cheek Danse
Macabre. Like one of those wonderful Mexican Dia De Los
Muertos arrangements of tiny skeletal figures going about
their daily business oblivious to the fact that they no
longer have flesh on their bones!

The echoing vocal elements of 'Space Is The Only Noise If
You Can See' weave in and out of a cheekily loping bass riff
rattling and rolling through the spaces between the stars.
"Replace the word space with a drink and forget it..." intones
Mr Jaar. Methinks he has the capacity for a little drollery too!

So strange and so much to enjoy. 'Colomb' is a curiously beautiful
confection. The gentle almost-jazzy piano part supports a whistfully
deconstructed vocal of captivating intensity and mystery.

All-in-all I am quite convinced that Mr Jaar is onto something here!
Open your heart and your ears and don't be scared to jump straight in!

This is interstellar alchemy of the most accessible kind.

Essential.
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on 23 September 2011
The best album I've heard since Panda Bear's Person Pitch. The music comes from a different background but it has the same sort of feel as Noah Lennox's classic. A beguiling mix of inventiveness and strangeness that manages to stay warm and inviting at the same time.

I don't listen to hype. I didn't even know that Jaar was being "hyped". Some people seem to think that critical acclaim is the same as "hype". Have they thought that some people might actually like the album.
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on 11 March 2014
When I heard this Album I was astounished. It is amazing. Recently I bought new Headphones (better too), I was surprised again. This Album is simply amazing!
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on 1 March 2015
I got into Nicolas Jaar after hearing his mixes on YouTube. For me, the album doesn't work as well. Less cohesive and at points felt more like a soundscape album. Great quality and Jaar is clearly talented...but not what I expected from the album.
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on 26 July 2014
Possibly one of the best electronic albums I've listened too, if you haven't listened yet; Sit in a dark room with just this in your ears, you will have an experience. Jaar is the best at making you feel the music
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on 7 October 2013
Brilliant new sounding electronica with different beeps and bops that compliment each other throughout!
Recommend if you like the genre/
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on 31 May 2013
Gorgeous and really refreshing; within one listen I was impressed. I'm not familiar with Jaar, but I'll keep a look-out for his work.
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on 25 November 2013
and we let it burn.
Inspired sounds and great experimental lounge music.
I think he's gonna be a front man in this genre
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on 7 January 2013
In trying something random I found something wonderful, a beautiful laid back album that is a real treat from start to finish
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on 8 December 2014
Yes Nicolas Jaar at his best as always. I'm enjoying his music very much. And this album is great. Thank you
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