After a couple of much loved releases on RVNG International, Kansas based composer David Moore aka Bing & Ruth has signed to 4AD. This is a much more apt signing for a label that was known for moody and elegant music than the fucking Lemon Twigs and should bring a bit of self cocking respect back to the imprint. 'No Home of the Mind' explores the piano's percussive qualities alongside woodwind and gorgeous soundscapes.
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Previously on ‘(The Adventures of) Bing & Ruth’: City Lake set out minimalist ensemble blueprint manifesto, firing twinkling mini-melodies alongside jet-propelled rhythms and -- you won’t believe what happened next -- Tomorrow Was The Golden Age pushed that sound still (inwardly) further, melodram-ettes ripped up and tossed to the winds, splinters of what might have been re-surfacing to ripple tantalisingly, delicately, serenely across the pool.
So, the return of B&R: No Home Of The Mind finds composer, pianist and ‘The Chief’ David Moore (presumably happily) ensconced in his new 4AD-shaped house. Having pruned down his trademark ensemble just a touch (they’re down to five now), Moore is all set to free up his tumbling piano melodies to roll and cascade over each other, almost ad infinitum, to a backing of nuanced low strings and breaths of woodwind, as on the dramatic and affecting opener, ‘Starwood Choker’. Time to buckle up, folks; this is going to be an emotional ride.
Fans will know how Moore likes to explore his keyboard’s percussive qualities, and as ever it’s that repetition which serves as the most gorgeous type of mesmerism. Like Philip Glass, but with more feeling, and substance. Waves of sound flood out of these here review headphones in the most enchanting way. I’m barely knee-deep into the record when the soothing, warming tones of ‘Scrapes’ flood in and I find myself drifting along to the beauty, suddenly aware of my frozen fingers which have paused and hovered over this bloody iMac keyboard for I don’t know how long. It’s a fine start to the new record.
That ensemble really is sparse now, and it’s a canny move. There’s space to expand, but those quiet moments -- see the glacial ‘Chonchos’ and the Harold Budd / Winged Victory - like ‘Is Drop’ -- only underscore a strangely pleasing sense of displacement and calm other-worldliness. It’s OK. It’s a safe place, and we’re in the hands of a master. The players sound just the right distance away, unobtrusive: piano reverb and slightly dissonant ambience collide with each other now and then to form mutating shapes; all the while Moore’s piano breathes expansively, stretches out dreamily. This is Moore’s most hypnotic work yet… aaaand.. Bing! I think that’s time.
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