William Basinski - Lamentations
Critic Score
Based on 9 reviews
2020 Ratings: #131 / 818
User Score
Based on 176 ratings
2020 Ratings: #416
Liked by 6 people
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Built upon his trademark oblique washes of collapsing noise, Lamentations is undoubtedly a momento mori. Contemplative and unstable, the record is a 12-track paean to the benevolent act of taking domestic solace in retreating.


Crafted from his personal tape-loop archive, and punctuated by lugubrious rumbles and operatic shocks, Lamentations furthers Basinski's reputation as an empathetic conduit of tragedy, mirroring societal tribulation as a necessary act of communal release.

Loud and Quiet

As ever, the passage of time is the process. Grief too becomes more central to this work, particularly in its use of emotive female vocal samples.


Lamentations wanders cautiously between dark and hovering gloom, tender reflection, and moments of wistful nostalgia that almost feel gleeful. It's one of the more accessible of Basinski's offerings, and continues building on the delicate language of subtext and observation that makes his work so important.

William Basinski delivered one of his finest records by choosing to fragment his creative flow and explore dark ambient territories.
The ambient composer goes back to raiding his decades-deep personal archives for vintage tape to revive with new perspective and fresh feeling.
Spectrum Culture

This is a meditation both on sadness and the way we conjure it through music.

Lord, see my anguish! My heart is broken and my soul despairs, for I have rebelled against you. In the streets the sword kills, and at home there is only death. - Lamentations 1:20

William Basinski’s “Lamentations” is a nearly hour-long collection of tracks, ranging from 1 to 11 minutes- a Pandora’s box of grief and decay made of tape loops and studies from Basinski’s archives dating back to half a century ago. This album is most reminiscent of Everywhere At The ... read more
William BaSTINKY haha
William Basinski's place in the ambient "mainstream" was definitely solidified by his powerful early 2000s Disintegration Loops, a hallmark in how emotion can be conveyed through seemingly simplistic instrumentation. And while not much can top the tragic sorrow and ultimate depressive catharsis surrounding his magnum opus, and the bleak story behind its creation, Lamentations is still another captivating ambient album fitting of high praise from such a celebrated artist. At just under ... read more
this is the sound life makes when it's 2 am on a friday and you have 10 hours worth of english homework due at midnight but instead you listening to an ambient album from a random old dude
"Lamentations" is a wonderful feeling of relaxation, hydration. It's incredibly beautiful and enjoyable to listen to.
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Track List

  1. For Whom the Bell Tolls
  2. The Wheel of Fortune
  3. Paradise Lost
  4. Tear Vial
  5. O, My Daughter, O, My Sorrow
  6. Passio
  7. Punch and Judy
  8. Silent Spring
  9. Transfiguration
  10. All These Too, I, I Love
  11. Please, This Shit Has Got To Stop
  12. Fin

Year End Lists

#16/The Wire
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Added on: August 24, 2020