Brock Van Wey is a man with many outputs. Earth House Hold for deep house, East Of Oceans for drum and bass and his constantly expanding bvdub ambient project which digs as deep into the emotion of electronic music as you can. After swathes of releases on n5MD, AY, Darla, Echospace, and Kompakt he went self-released for ages and now returns in grand style to Glacial Movements. What a stunner.
CD £12.99 GM029
CD on Glacial Movements.
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Here he is again. Just reading the comments on his Bandcamp people really love this guy but here at the towers we see his output as a bit more hit and miss. Some albums hitting the mark with pinpoint accuracy, some just sounding like half formed chill out. Well hot on the heels of 'Yours Are Stories of Sadness' - (a good one) comes another epic full lengthter. All is going well on the opening 'On Deaf Hearts Your Prayers They Fall' until some pitched down vocals sidle in but they are far enough back in the mix not to ruin things completely. Brock Van Wey is an expert on devilishly sad ambient chord changes and demonstrates this on 'With Broken Wings and Giants Tall' which has a lovely 'Selected Ambient Works' style intro to which some almost ravey chords are added. Which the Orb track or other this is reminding me of I'm not sure - it's almost too familiar to being truly striking but very lovely indeed.
Van Wey's issue is that he's very very good at the simple stuff but you can't keep doing that album after album so he has to find other sonic landscapes to explore. This hasn't always been successful in the past but on 'Sparkling Legions Turn to Black' he adds in acoustic guitar figures and shards of scattered voices which help envelope the track. To go back to one of the reviews on Bandcamp this is 'healing music'. It certainly has an evocative power to it and there are some wonderful drifts. On tracks like 'Footsteps Fade If Not the Pain' there's an almost Sakamoto ish feel to the Eastern melodies.
It's hard not to enjoy this beautiful drifting music or at very least to be soothed by it so I'll stick my head out and say that this is a generally successful dollop of ambient bliss to get relaxed out to.
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