Third part of Mike Bennett's Zimiamvian Night project. A collection of extremely long form ambient music, the total running length lying north of the 100 minute mark. Can be played quietly for a more authentic ambient experience, or loudly to get up close and personal to the combination of field recordings, acoustic noise, and piano. On Infraction.
CD £15.99 INFX 054
CD on Infraction.
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Twelve years isn’t a very long time in the grand scheme of things. What it is long enough for, it turns out, is making an ambient album over 100 minutes long. Not to say that all Mike Bennett’s been doing since the last entry in the Zimiamvian Night story in 2007 is working on part 3. But the sheer enormity and specificity of Zimiamvian Night 3 suggests he may well have done.
This is ambient music in the truest sense of the word, if it being released by ambient label Infraction wasn’t a dead giveaway. It’s probably best enjoyed at the absolute lowest audible volume (and probably not while your colleagues are listening to Kate Bush’s The Hounds of Love round the corner). Bennett lays down a bed of static, of bird song, of the sound of trains, providing us a with a reference point for what follows, be that the most patient piano imaginable or the introduction of some other field recording.
What is most moving is the sheer subtlety of it all. Jump from minute to minute on the longer tracks you can see what Bennett’s up to, but it is something else to listen to the pieces in full. A Zimiamvian Night is one that moves at a glacial pace, yes it’s low but it’s also crushing in its power. This is especially true of the tracks on disc one which have an almost horror like quality to them which makes them particularly effective. Disc two meanwhile is friendly and more welcoming, anchored in the slowest piano melodies possible. Slow enough that without concentrating they’re barely there.
This is clearly an album that took a tremendous effort to complete, and one that has left me wondering how long it will be till I can return.
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