Opulent minimalism from two oustanding auteurs’ airy trip defies any notion of oxymoron deficiency.
Perhaps, it’s the titles assigned to each of these cuts to capture their essence, if not soul, but abstract soundscapes rarely sound so concrete, although still atmospheric, as on the third joint venture of British keyboard player Boddy and Norwegian guitarist Wøllo. Impressive when they’re apart, together the pair of composers is able to snatch miracles out of ether and shape something arresting from imaginary matter, so it would be futile to apply a longtitude angle to “Meridian” that exists in our world’s secret dimension.
Enveloping the listener’s ears alternately in worry and euphoria, the eleven pieces play with mood without really changing overall emotional colors, yet there’s a lot of hues to direct the music’s flow: the most obvious being viridescent patches on the crystalline bloom of “Verdant” where insistent six-string strum invites wondrous synthesizer’s wobble for a swirl. With latently epic “Rescue” filled with caressing, multi-faceted expectancy and “Requiem” coming down with cold calmness, it’s impossible to ignore this appeal of such a risk-laden excursion into the unknown.
Where “Uncharter” is a little more than dynamic wave which will create initial tension and give it an alien touch, the baroque eloquence of “Golden Times” focuses on melody to add a dewdrop detail here and there before fading away and dissolving in silence. Still, “Isolation” rolls out oscillating solemnity past a palpable tune, and “Colony” is teeming with electronica-tinctured percussive intent, until new-age-like ivories unfold all the beauty that a mist of mystery may hide. But the ripple propelling “Bone Station” to bliss won’t ever ossify, and the scintillating “Diaspora” doesn’t offer a fixed perspective, despite the presence of drums, gliding instead toward undefined rapture, while the title track’s polarized splashes deliver a folk-inspired meandering dance.
As a result, only “Obscured” can cause attention to dissipate which is only logical for the album’s intangible finale. Logical for a record that pulls one in to submerge in sweet stasis, whose inner moves are endless, and never let go. It’s a trap everyone must avoid avoiding.