The grinding textures into which various of Fear of Men’s indie jangles disappear on Loom, their first album proper may be both the crashing of the breakers and the grinding of Chronos’s teeth.
LP1 is a solid, fully confident pop album built from the same blocks that formed her previous release, which nevertheless forgoes the bewilderingly alien quality of her best work.
At points, listening to Bécs is to hear gauze become gossamer, and feel it too.
To Be Kind achieves an intimacy no Swans album has ever approached, but it also ranks among their most turbulent works to date.
Syro remains faithful to the very sounds and idiosyncrasies that brought Aphex Twin about, the way it transforms and rotates any feeling of assumption while managing to sound so deliciously typical.
Where Ariel once undermined genre through aesthetics, here he uses genre to undermine himself and his own authority over the idea of a coherent self.
Perfume Genius has never sounded more intimate. In its most forward-looking moments, he is still reflecting on himself; but at its most insular, he seems to be speaking for multitudes.
It’s a gracefully self-contained ecology — a sonic environment rich with empty and warm spaces, within which the listener is urged to breathe more easily and share in a queer feeling of belonging.
The whole production would be grotesquely comical if it didn’t feel so unflinchingly, unapologetically sincere. And here’s the thing. Benji doesn’t resonate in spite of its awkwardness, but wholly because of it.
Faith In Strangers amplifies human interaction with the elements and the fractured nature of our relationship with them; this might not be the most joyful depiction, but it has been impeccably well documented here.
Harris’s analog mastery has created an inhabitable space of intense clarity, so that the silences become suggestions of the room she made them in, a sustained window. The affective work of Ruins is to translate with heartfelt precision the time and space of its recording, to collapse the world of its making and its consumption.
It would be all-too easy to charge him yet again with artistic tomfoolery and arch self-consciousness, there’s a newfound purpose to his dilettantism, one that invests the album with more weight than anyone had any right to expect.