Saturday, May 14, 2011

Marcus Fjellström - Library Music 1

This man is a delight. I thought his last album was a bit stronger on the whole, but my review of Library Music 1 sings his praises.

Most of these tracks are around two minutes long, and behave as windows into strange worlds. The dense and varied elements Fjellström arranges make these glimpses feel complete. The off-kilter piano chords in “107” teeter and rattle like the legs of a mentally-ill millipede. They are backed up by skittery snare rolls, static, fizzy cymbals, and a deep corridor of alternative percussion. “109” features a liquified, electronic vibraphone that shapeshifts amidst faint ebowed guitars, echoing chimes, some kind of dulicimer and an ambient haze. Fjellström works digitally, but his work sounds dusty and ancient due to progam plugins which emulate the irregularities of analog tape. “103” and even “110” sound a heck of a lot like Amon Tobin’s atmospheric meanderings, with motorcycle engine pulses, insectoid accents, bowed cymbals and a faint orchestra and choir. With such similar production values, one could easily trick an Amon fan into believing “103” was one of his new, unreleased tracks.

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