The collaged ambient pop of Marielle V. Jakobsons draws on stilted sound art and fluid melodic movements, which made for a grand adventure on 'Glass Canyon'. On new record 'Star Core' she continues to build from the same elements -- processed violin, a bassy backbone and a myriad of synth tone -- while singing at the same distance of many of your favourite ambient songwriters. Jakobsons is very good at detailing busy ecosystems with her music, so get ready to sink into the details on this one.
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It’s story time! If there’s one thing I learned about Marielle V Jakobsons’ from listening to her kraut-ambient pop collage ‘Glass Canyon’, a strong outlier to the rest of Students of Decay’s glacial output, it’s that she makes deeply adventuring music. ‘Star Core’, her follow-up for Thrill Jockey, is full of movement and journeying, never settling into particular timbres or melodies, instead running through a hundred ideas like all music should be transposable to endless rolls of tapestry.
This record does what Jakobson does best for a while -- its electronics mumble and stifle, rubbing their eyes and waking up, before the record’s title track opens up a bright, sparkling universe, championed with a gorgeous string arrangement and synths that sound like looping music boxes, opening and closing and opening and closing. As is Jakobson’s way, you can hear particular suites of the album ending as a new one emerges from it -- the music never halts to recompose itself, instead existing like a sleepless ecosystem. As “Star Core” descends, Jakobson’s remotely treated vocal opens up so the processed flutes of “The Beginning Is the End” can pass through freely.
I’m merely describing the sounds here, like some sonic middleman, but that’s because half the fun of listening to one of Jakobson’s records is keeping up with the damn thing. I remember finding out how to understand melody and harmony as flips of horizontal and vertical, and I think a similar analogy can be assigned to Jakobson’s music: it’s so lush, and textured with such slowness and patience, but it’s constantly bubbling towards something more, moving with excitement towards the next in-game landscape. TL;DR: prog drone, please buy.
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