Hybernation graces the next instalment of Rural Colour's desirable, blink and they're gone, postcard series. Field recordings and found around the house sound are placed delicately within the context of expansive electronic works. Abstraction and rhythm seemlessly add weight to the whimsical on the several carefully presented pieces within.
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- The Old Waterworks by Hybernation
9/10 Laurie Staff review, 12 November 2014
If there's one way to this reviewer's heart, it is to make a CD in which each track is "made solely from the sounds of one object". That's right ladies, get your mics down to B&Q. Thing is, there's probably already a long queue running all the way down Heart Street, and UK recording guru Stuart Bowditch aka Hybernate is sitting there calmly at the front, a mini postcard CD clutched in his hands.
The track names give clues to what these collages used to be, but it’s hard to recognise any ‘Fluorescent Tube’ or ‘Frampton’s Mug’ in this. I think Frampton’s Mug is the kitchen equivalent of Schrodinger’s Cat, in which the coffee is both velvety rich and burnt at the same time. While the presence of such field recordings appears to be lo-fi on the surface, the treatment and manipulation of these sources is very much a hi-fi affair, with tracks like ‘Watkins’ Lamp’ building from a spoken recording label to a concerto of rhythmically arranged clinks and undulating swells, with melodies forming from the natural resonances of the objects themselves. The production is so clean that this guy has definitely got some sweet mics and knows how to remove all of that noisy crap to leave only what is necessary. This allows the glitchier moments such as on ‘Frampton’s Mug’ to really shine, blurring the line between what is environmental noise and sculpted music. With the Hibernate postcard series hopefully far from a close, expect more audio treats in the future from hidden experts such as Hybernate, and to the man himself - the rest of Heart Street can clear off.
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