(Bo Weavil)

I’ll admit that I haven’t listened to everything that Oren Ambarchi has released, but I’m sure that this LP contains material that ranks among his finest. Lost Like A Star was composed for the Japanese dance company Gekidan Kaitaisha, its gradual growth seemingly perfect to accompany slow body movements that one can only imagine, having not seen the performance. Ambarchi deploys electric guitar, bowed instruments, samples, bells, cymbals and percussion to create fabulous layers of drones and glissando waves whose temperament stands halfway through Phill Niblock’s clashing upper partials and David Jackman’s Organum masterpieces. The same kind of quasi-invariable harmonic tapestry based on a progressive alteration of quietness is to be found in the second half of “The Final Option” on side B, a piece that Ambarchi recorded live in Melbourne’s ABC studios in 2006. It all begins with single string globules processed in rarefied spaces, then mutates into another wall of sound that features guitar, bells, cymbals and a motor to produce a mesmerizing effect, utterly stunning at high volume yet equally functional as a subterranean presence. A caressing aura of semi-distorted overtones, towering over the average of guitar-derived soundscaping, right there with the best production by Aidan Baker, James Plotkin and the likes, with the welcome addition of a wider choice of sonic sources that, at the end of the day and after all this name-dropping, makes this music partially comparable to the most recent output by Rosy Parlane. Either way, splendid stuff.

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