This is the least surprising album review I’ll ever write.
You see, Jeramiah Ross (aka “Module”) composed this amazing game soundtrack 3 years ago. Remember Shatter? Yeah, that was awesome.
In 2012, Module finished his original album “Imagineering.” According to his statements in our most recent podcast, some of these songs have been bouncing around in Module’s mind (and computer) for as many as six years. Given time to mature, they’ve become something absolutely stunning.
We’ll highlight some of our favorite tracks, and why they’re our favorites, after the jump.
If it’s March 26th or after when you’re reading this, you can listen along at bandcamp. Otherwise, said link is a great way to preorder the digital and/or physical version!
I’m a huge fan of this album. It’s an early contender for OSVOSTOTY2012′s “Other” (or maybe “Original Work?”) category. I’m head over heels.
The entire album manages to be marvelously cohesive, despite a bevy of new instruments and soundscapes being introduced from one track to the next. Heck, there’s even a full vocal track on the album. Let’s start there.
“The Pieces Fit,” layers one keyboard synth onto another, and onto another, before a heavily mixed computery voice comes in. It’s hard to determine the gender on first listen. I think that’s the idea though; this is a genderless entity letting you know that, in the end, things come together even in the midst of so much chaos. The song is this weird, electronic-Zen-trance concept that suggests to us that, indeed, “the pieces fit” even when it seems like nothing is working out.
Another meditative track I enjoy is the album’s finale, “The World Spins without you.” I love how the acoustic guitar gets the repetitive glitch-mix on certain notes but is otherwise a clear, resonant recording. The atmospheric sounds and the simple piano part mix into this song very nicely as well. There’s just … so much, SO MUCH, going on in this song. But we could dismiss so much of it as background. Kind of like how we so easily forget about the earth’s rotation and revolution. We wouldn’t even notice it if it weren’t for what we’ve learned, as a collective society, in the past centuries.
Fans of the feature track “Amethyst Caverns” from Shatter will be happy to know that the phonemic/syllabic voice synth used for that song is back, and she/it is singing about Kisssssinnnnggg… in the song “Make Out Magic.” It’s got a saccharine sweetness to it, but I still love it. When the tempo slows and we can hear the vowels better, that’s a great moment in the song. The following track, “High Way,” uses that same super-funky synth bass that we heard in “Argon Refinery” (again, Shatter). But that just gives the backbone to a really “groovy far-out” kind of song.
Two more songs I’ll mention, then I’ll leave it to you to make the decision to buy or not to buy. “Reflections Scatter,” despite being one of the shortest tracks on the album, holds a lot of depth within it. This track is minimalist both in terms of melodic repetition, and in terms of atmosphere / decorative arrangement. Layers do sound do appear to give some semblance of a chord progression, but it is otherwise a fairly sparse piece of music. The piano leads the way with one simple, looped phrase. The drag triplets and the rushed resolve jar your senses enough to make you pay attention, but again, the minimalist repetition is designed to help you get lost.
I have to pay respect to the 2nd-longest track on the album, “A Vehement Storm,” which runs over 9 minutes (FYI, the longest track, “Sunrise Andrometer,” is over 10 minutes long!). Finger snaps have never sounded cooler. All the reversed woodwind / string stuff, mixed with the intentional vinyl-scratch-pop, makes me feel like I’m spinning a record the wrong way. When the full drum set kicks in, in earnest, and that sweet reverb guitar stuff comes in so loud that it all but overwhelms the dubstep synth bass (aka “wub wub”), I can’t help but grin.
That’s enough. My words are belittling the prowess of this album. Just go buy it.Tags: Acoustic, Ambient, Electronic, Imagineering, Jeramiah Ross, Module, Original Work, Reviews, Sidhe, Vocal