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lawrence english-kiri no oto lp (digitalis)

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There's no doubt that Australia-based media artist, composer and curator Lawrence English has been responsible for some of the best drone compositions in the past decade, but with Kiri No Oto he unleashed his magnum opus. It's a stunning album on every level. English blends an array of natural and unnatural sources into a living document that is constantly captivating and engages the listener on many levels. This is a work set apart from much of English's discography, but still blanketed by his exquisite attention to detail that keeps everything in its right place. Originally released as a CD on the Touch label (TONE 031CD) in 2008, Kiri No Oto finds a new lease on life etched into wax. Album opener "Organs Lost At Sea" leaves nothing to chance. From the first saturated chords, you are enveloped in Kiri's aural landscape. Towering drones get weighted down with fuzz, overpowering the fog that's present throughout the record. It's like hearing the hum of the Earth released from its cage for the first time. Flowing seamlessly into the quieter but no less imposing "Soft Fuse," there's never a chance to catch your breath. English is content to overrun your ears. "Waves Sheer Light" catches you by the wings and lifts you high into the clouds. This is what floating sounds like. It's an enchanted and dizzying experience. This is music that is timeless in the literal sense. You get lost within these sonic walls, unsure if you've been swimming there for hours or only a few minutes. This is especially true on the underwater gauziness of "Figure's Lone Static." It feels endless. "White Spray" plies similar ground with bits and pieces of electric harmonics peaking through the static every so often, acting as beacons to find your way. One is content to get lost here. As the album comes to a close on the cathartic "Oamura," Lawrence English's job is done. He has taken you on a dynamic journey and kept you riding on eternal highs. When the melodic tones finally get overtaken by the sound of ocean waves, it is simply time to flip it over and start the experience again. Vinyl cut at Dubplates & Mastering in Berlin. Limited to 500 copies only for the world.

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