Amongst Myselves – Fragments (2010)
1. – Smell Of The Sun – (5:08)
2. – She Who Loves Silence – (6:14)
3. – Morning In The Bowl Of Night – (10:24)
4. – Field Of Broken Mirrors – (7:36)
5. – The Sunlit Tower – (6:17)
6. – Clouds Of Unknowing – (7:42)
7. – City Of A Hundred Gates – (3:27)
8. – Town On The Hill – (4:39)
9. – Haunted By The Ghosts Of Sounds – (5:26)
Playlist length: 56 minutes 53 seconds
Summary: There are many varied ambient excursions traversed throughout the uninterrupted 57 minute soundscape of “Fragments” (there are 9 track markers, but no fades or blanks between tracks). While the layered synths, guitar and environmental elements are fragments, they are woven on the album into a cohesive soundscape evocative of a continually developing theme.
Interpretations might include darkness to enlightenment, or an evolutionary process or cycle, whether in a petri dish, sub space, or dawn on an earthly wilderness – my dominant impression was the latter, perhaps as part of an exploratory wilderness journey.
The overall theme begins dark, brooding and minimal throughout the first 11 minutes (tracks 1 & 2), with the environmental backdrops intimating night or cavernous or dark void settings, the titles suggestive of deep night approaching first light. Intensity picks up through “Morning In The Bowl Of Night” with the environmental sounds shifting from night ambience to a low heating or warming crackling / static. “Field Of Broken Mirrors” evokes a further development of a lighting process (sunlight glistening), with an electric guitar spiral up interrupting the environmental ambience (sunrise), and the theme spirals continually higher through “The Sunlit Tower” to a climax ending at an oceanscape drifting into “Clouds Of Unknowing.” There the soundscape introduces elements of uncertainty, which then develop into more ominous tones in City Of A Hundred Gates.” The environmental backdrop of rain bridges “City Of A Hundred Gates” into “Town On The Hill,” which is light and airy, perhaps suggestive of exploration and discovery, combined with the environmental sounds of birds. The final track unfolds with wispy ambient environmental sounds of people, footsteps, and other activity as the electronic layering builds, which might be an envisioning of the past inhabitants (“Haunted By The Ghosts Of Sounds”) of Town On The Hill.
Whatever your interpretations, “Fragments” is an engaging listen – especially in its entirety, and one that lends itself to repeated listens and re-interpretations without becoming tiresome.
Genres (& sub genres): Ambient, Dark Ambient, Electronica, Space Music
Listening Impressions: Ambient, Dark, Brooding, Gloomy, Droning, Other Worldly, Intense, Environmental, Space Music, Dreamy, Airy;
Similar to: Between Interval, J. Arif Verner, Rudy Adrian, Sante, Richard Bone, Jon Jenkins;