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Christian "Fennesz" Fennesz isn't a lad who rushes himself. The last time he put out a full-length album was 2008 so you can bet he's put some thought and effort into the seven tracks here. I'm on my third go through it and still struggling to find words to describe the sumptuous listening experience this album provides. There's something quite indecipherable about it. He's in quite tuneful territory this time round, carving out grandiose constructions with one foot in ambient pop and the other in serious sound design.
The sounds here are expertly balanced and gorgeously detailed, an elegant mixture of synths and live instrumentation that's often been tampered with until it's unrecognisable. Fennesz has a real knack for making the most filthily distorted noises sound incredibly pure and soulful. 'The Liar' is full of gnarled guitar trails, saturated and condensed, flickering and dripping and buzzing with grinding distortion, lonely howls under a cloud of subtly shifting drones, while on 'Pallas Athene' he elevates us to deep space amidst a swirl of dreamy new age synth drift with a mounting sense of '2001' unease.'Sav' is also notable as it's a collaboration with Cedric Stevens on modular synth, a subtle soundscape full of alien clicks and purrs, celestial drones and earthy rumbles.
As you've probably come to expect from Fennesz, this is an album of unfathomable sonic depths the like of which can only be the result of slavish obsession.
5/10 Mark T. 27th May 2014
Not sure why but I don't really like this new stuff. Maybe, if I only had heard a few songs, my opinion would be different, but it seems a static album for my ears. Fennesz is always Fennesz, but in this album, he doesn't catch me into his world.
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