Top positive review
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Intriguing yet slightly unsettling. It definitely grows on you!
on 14 October 2013
Upon my first listen I was not that impressed. Lots of 'clever' technological noodling with random sounds coming in & out for no particular reason.
I decided to stick with it and listen to it a few more times because I wasn't familiar with these musicians' work or the genres in which they work. It started to click together much more as a whole! The atmosphere of the album is spacious yet claustrophobic at the same time (not quite sure how that works, but it does!) and demands a full listen rather than picking out individual tracks. The first track however, Golden Arrow, is over 11 minutes long but doesn't outstay its welcome. I could happily have another 5 minutes of it, as it does take a bit too long to get going - but when it kicks in it's fantastic. In fact I think a few of the other tracks could have been extended/developed further so that the album is around an hour in length than 45mins.
The build up of sounds throughout the album help create the stage for the music itself, which makes for a fascinating listen. There is some low-end, chest-punching rhythmic bass (which I always love!) and some minimal but really effective blues-y guitar chords. The vocals are echoed and breathy and although fit with the context of the music, never really satisfy. but maybe that's the point!
So, an arty chin-stroking album that's far too clever for its own good, or an intriguing yet slightly unsettling body of work that reveals more & more upon each listen? For me, definitely the latter. I'm glad I stuck with it.