The first volume in a new series from the French electronica producer-come-abstractionist Ssaliva. 11 tracks in 20 minutes, these sketches play out like frail pop motifs yet to be turned into their full being. The unplugged notion here is one of being incredibly stripped back, delayering his dense experimental electronic palettes to even just a simple plucking of strings. Limited CD on JJ Funhouse.
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Ssaliva is the performing alias of François Boulanger from Liège, and here he is with the first in a new series called (for reasons I’ll get to) Unplugged. Volume 1 opens with with ‘Backfire’: Boulanger has gone straight in with some very pretty but fragile little melodies to trigger off this first part of his set of stripped-back miniatures. Boulanger has certainly been known to sound a lot more layered and intense than this. Here, he’s gone for the ‘therapising’ market, perhaps.
Sounding very much like he’s playing a nylon-stringed guitar or small guitar-like instrument (possibly an oriental lute?), this CD is studded with gems. Yes, a touch New Age in feel and with the barest, most minimal structure -- these vignettes are sometimes akin to a mini Durutti minus drum track, crossed with Japanese folk tunes. One clear example is to be heard on ‘Radiant’; as clear, warm and bright as a recent day on the moors.. It makes for a very easy, pleasant listen for your more serene and tranquil, Zen moments.
Essentially what I’m saying is you’ll not find many surprises but you’ll more than likely enjoy this. It’ll blend in a treat with your next Reiki session.
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