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9 out of 10
A split album as split albums should be - a collaboration of thoughts and emotions bound together in a river of notes and sounds. Split is quite clearly the wrong word as Near and Faraway is about bridging the gap of time and space (something that we have never lived in a better era to do).
Ambience as ambient should be; soft, gentle, swaying, pierced by breathing peaks and sighs. Evening by Evening comes from Fabio Orsi (the northern hemispheres representative) and is a forlornly uplifting mesh of guitars, keyboards and samples that blend and weave together forming a dense yet therapeutic sound that blows into your ear like the fresh salty sea air on a glitteringly golden day. Precious and permissive.
The title track is perfectly sandwiched between each acts 'solo' (so to speak) effort and is an amalgamation of rushing guitars and soaring drones - an instrumental Jesu sans beats. This does not so much attack the senses as glide along them, flirtatiously flicking its hair and beckoning with the slow motion curling of a glistening finger. Birds chirruping at the ten minute mark announce the arrival of Explosions in the Sky type reverb drenched guitar work that threatens to spill its murky waters on this glacier like canvas. Embracing an aesthetic that is as much about patience as it is the journey; each modulation becomes a pair of ankle-wings lifting you at every step. They have successfully created music to fill the gulf between their respective nations and in doing so a sound as enveloping as Sunn0))) has been born, in fact you could argue this is the Yang to Sunn0)))'s Yin, which of course suggests that they both contain small elements of each other (Alice per example).
Branch and Stone - the third track on this album is certainly a darker affair as heavy feedback oscillates, playing around at the lower ends of the scale, occasionally heading to brown note territory but never without due care and always leaning to invite the listener on.
Thoughtful and tribadistic.
Listen: www.myspace.com/orisfabio & www.myspace.com/backgroundfrequencies
1. Evening by Evening
2. Near and Faraway
3. Branch and Stone