vendredi 16 décembre 2016

JAMES MURRAY: Eyes to the Height (2016)

“Invading, Eyes to the Height had the same effect on me as when I was getting addicted to Until We Meet the Sky from Solar Fields”
1 The Black and the Grey 5:44
2 Holloways 5:55
3 What can be Done 6:14
4 Particles (Part 1) 6:10
5 Eyes to the Height 4:58
6 Ghostwalking 6:02
7 Passing Places 5:25
8 Laterisers 5:47
9 Particles (Part 2) 5:14
10 Copestone 7:01

Inre087 (Digipack/DDL 58:37) ****¼
(Psybient)
It’s been a while since I hoped to find another artist possessing a sound aestheticism as touching as that of Magnus Birgersson. To say the least with his album Until we Meet the Sky, released in 2011. Well, this last James Murray's opus is a deserving aspiring one. Sculptured in a panoramic vision as brilliant as this work of Solar Fields, “Eyes to the Height” is fulfilling our ears with a soundscape as luxuriant as the secrets of a sonic forest lost in the Eden of Ultimae Records and where is lost another forest always so virginal.
This interstitial journey begins with sound arcs which waste away as furrows of milk in a coffee. The slow movement of "The Black and the Grey" radiates of these shadows of praline which get couple to threadlike synth lines to the scarlet colors. Pulsations add a timid techno approach for Mutant Zombies in a sound fauna where voices murmur an oracle imprecise to our ears. This first title of “Eyes to the Height” redefines the barriers of this this comeback opus of James Murray to the Lyon based label. The slow movement hides a crescendo which will be more visible on other titles while a sibylline melody makes its way throughout a noisy fauna. Completely seducing noises which weaken their fragilities in "Holloways" for a more seraphic presence in a structure at both heavy and slow where the pulsations, the percussions and the soft cymbals accompany the boborygmus procession which gets away between the interstices of the sounds. We float as we dream by watching mermaids basking on an interstellar ice floe. "What can be Done" is our first rendezvous with our emotions. On a soft structure of rhythm tied up at a crescendo, the slow movement is adorned with a panoply of ambient noises which wind a top cicatrized of its rocky papules. The play of the echoes between the percussions and the pulsations binds itself to a stubborn bass which propels "What can be Done" towards a wave of melody sculptured in the dreams of a nostalgic keyboard. It’s a title which inhales the good Psybient of Solar Fields. Great!
And we are not getting rid of this hold of the charms of “
Eyes to the Height” with "Particles (Part 1)" which bangs inside us by an apathetic rhythm and its melodic arcs which quaver like some huge vibrating reflections that these giants' fingers produce by caressing the surface of a quiet lake. The rhythm, always very celestially slow, wears out its beatings which stay prisoners of this approach as melodic than sibylline. An approach which get transposes on the title-track and its frozen arpeggios. Arpeggios which little by little adopt the pace of an increasing tempo in order to make glitter a song illuminated on the restrained pulsations of a good down-tempo. After a "Ghostwalking" clearly slower than the E.P.
of last September, "Passing Places" and "Laterisers" lead us in the more nocturnal, more abstruse and more ambient territories of “Eyes to the Height”. A passage of ambiences which raise a little more the flavor of "Particles (Part 2)". A title which leaves as much its tracks between our ears and to the edge of our soul than this ball of emotions which is Part 1. With its zestier and more lively structure of rhythm, although we do not break up the walls here, "Copestone" goes a little bit out of the paths of this last James Murray's mosaic of tones. It’s the title which gets closer a little more to Where Edges Meet, released in 2008 on Ultimae Records, with a more ethereal atmosphere and especially more radiant and where a thick cloud of lines to the harmonies full of contrasts and restraints floats on a bed of pulsations of which the arrhythmic approach takes the shape of the hundred steps of a centipede to the agony. You get the image; you get the tones!
We cannot stay insensible to the unique and always very stylized productions of the Ultimae Records label. If some works remain cabalistic, other ones attracts us straight away in this universe where the charms get multiply as our open-mindedness inflates our passion for the color of sounds and for rhythms always lasciviously attractive. It’s exactly what waits for us with this James Murray's very lyrical opus. And I have to admit that “Eyes to the Height” had the same effect on me as when I was getting addicted to Until we Meet the Sky from Solar Fields. And that my friends, that's saying something. A monument in the Psybient genre!
Sylvain Lupari (December 16th, 2016)
gutsofdarkness.com & synthsequences.blogspot.ca
You will find this album on the Ultimae Records Bandcamp page here

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