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- Journey Into The Light by Mark Banning
8/10 Mike Staff review, 13 February 2014
This LP by Mark Banning was recorded in 1984 but I would never have guessed if I hadn't read the press release, as it contains just the kind of new agey peace vibes that seem to be all the rage at the moment. The LP is composed entirely of processed guitar, zither, voice and field recordings, but if I didn't know better I'd think that those stretched-out drones were coming from a synth, when actually on closer inspection they seem to originate from Banning's guitar and voice.
There are two lengthy tracks on this album which both follow much the same pattern. A blurred deep space drift of processed sounds overlaid with lots of blissed out guitar twiddling and exotic harp-like zither sweeps. It's an understated aesthetic but Banning does well to tread a line between busy, sensuous twinkling and stoned drone stillness. It closes with tranquil field recordings of the sea lapping against a beach, setting the listener down somewhere warm but unfamiliar. Lovely stuff.
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