8/10 Mike Staff review, 14 February 2014
This latest LP from Plurals comes on very pretty translucent orange vinyl, with the labels marked with the letter "A" and a picture of a bee. Very droll. On the sleeve there is a picture of a ribcage surrounded by bees. Also contained within the sleeve is a packet of bee friendly wild flower seeds. "But what kind of music is it?", I hear you cry. Well, in case you'd not figured it out yet, it's drones.
You might have already known this because it's not the first thing Plurals have put out. They're a freeform drone collective from Brighton and the keen-eyed amongst you might have noticed that they also collaborated with Aidan Baker on his Latitude. On this record there are two side-long pieces. I'm getting drums, I'm getting some guitar, both backwards and forwards, there's always a low hum going on, some field recordings. I'm pretty sure I heard some bees at one point but they're not heavily featured in the soundscapes, it's more of a spacious slow-flowing ambience they've got going on here.
The drone on side A builds in a very slow crescendo from really quiet to fairly quiet, with some gentle tremolo picked guitar and whooshing cymbal work becoming increasingly present through its second half. Over on the other side there's a spacey drone from either a synth or processed guitar, I can't tell, and there's lots of reedy squeaking over the top and then some anarchic piano plonking, which all settles down to a long, flat dronechord which is quite hypnotic, with layers getting added to it until it's quite a powerful sound, and then we've got some more reedy sounds but this time with lots of dub echo. What is that, an oboe? This track's much more alien and oblique and a bumpier ride than the relaxing first side but they're both interesting drones.
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