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Aw man, the dark lord Matt Elliott is back with a brand new epic new album on Ici D'ailleurs. After a big hiatus from recording as the TTEF, filling in the gap with a few ace solo albums, he's back! It's fantastic too. In a nutshell it's full of swirling melodies laid over drum 'n' bass beats. It sounds like he's carried on with the orchestral business present on his solo albums, all covered with some mangled, fractured, splintered beats. I love this album but some folks will find it a difficult listen as it's kinda oppressive and not massively easy listening. The melodies are lush though, and over the five tracks (which all seemingly merge into one) you get sucked into a dark world of paranoia and beauty at the same time. Quite a feat I reckon, as I'm sure that's not an easy thing to do. There's loads of strings in there to keep me happy and you neo-classical heads who fancy a a bit of a "large-up" might dig this. The undercurrent reminds me of the old Spymania stuff but with haunting classical arrangements carefully layered over the tracks. It's done brilliantly, and with song titles like 'If you Treat Us All Like Terrorists We Will Become Terrorists' it probably gives you an idea of what you're letting yourself in for..... He's not a happy chappy and this is not a happy album but there's some delightful moments in there. I can't wait to take it home and check it out on vinyl!
8/10 John Bloor Customer review, 22nd November 2010
The Dark is the new release by The Third Eye Foundation, the work of Matt Elliot. It’s the third album in his most recent trilogy of work, released on the label Ici D’Ailleurs.
The whole of the first three tracks is is built around a single melody theme. An orchestra playing a sweeping, grand, melancholy phrase over and over as though they’re stuck in a loop of gathering darkness and storms with repetitive phrases of half-heard singing. It has the quality of dreamlike nostalgia, reminding me of The Caretaker or D_radio but with destroyed beats and really dark, pounding subsonics it is also a fair few worlds away.
This theme of the first three tracks metamorphosises so slowly, adding phrases, building with other sounds decaying – literally destroying themselves like old tape losing its coating – I didn’t realise what was happening at first, being pulled along by this soundscape. The droning of strings, woodwind and vocal passages, underlies all adding an unsettling, discordant air to proceedings.
Then the clouds break with sorrowful strings and electronically mashed beats build up a new uplifting feeling of light. Almost like the collapse of memories, it sounds desperate and chaotic. All the while the strings maintain their melody whilst around them structures crumble. The beats turn into a euphoric drum and bass by the final track, providing a sense of release from the darkness.
This latest Third Eye Foundation album is an intense and moving experience, leaving me feeling mentally drained by the end but it’s a journey worth taking.
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- The Dark by The Third Eye Foundation
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