|Artist: Ian Boddy|
Released: January 2013
UK synthesist Ian Boddy has thus far played live on STAR'S END Ambient Radio four times (five if we count the on-air concert he did with Mark Shreeve in their duo Arc). Each performance has been released as an album. Sepulchre (64'02"), recorded on the 14 October 2012 broadcast of STAR'S END, begins as one kind of album and ends as something entirely different. It is a multi-movement piece with variety on the surface yet cohesion underneath. For Boddy the STAR'S END performance studio is a way to press forward with innovations that attain the emotional powers and intimacy that he seems to be seeking. And with each hour-long opportunity we obtain a truer glimpse into the inventive, intricate and never-knowable mind of this imaginative musician. With a willingness to linger on moments of great intensity Sepulchre begins with a sound collage that feels like a force bearing down on the listener. Tone painting at its best, this section is a cold otherworld of willful incoherence all its own. Rumbling drones form a cold and dark foundation beneath swirling atmospheric modulations and gliding moans. Synth strings move through dramatic progressions, as a prelude to an epic sequencer space romp. Starting out as a low pulse this part's energy level quickly rises. Throbbing bass deviously propels the music forward pulling along outsized electronic chords and softly distorted (and skillfully played) keyboard leads. Boddy's tone patterns eventually wind down into a post-storm calm - and into two movements of beautiful resolution. The ending always comes last, and while we are within the borders of the conclusion we persistently feel as if we are just getting a grip on something that is slipping away. Some truths are better told in sound. From the disorientation of surreal dissonance, to the clarity of focused structure, and final passages so tender as to rouse an awakening of our own fragility, Sepulchre provokes a range of reactions, none of which are wrong. Ian Boddy did realize this music, but it lives in everyone else.
- Chuck van Zyl/STAR'S END 14 February 2013
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