Artist: Stormloop
Album: Snowbound

Released: 22 November 2011
Label: Glacial Movements

Describing the CD Snowbound (53'43") with terms such as "tinkling chimes" and "silver bells" or "white noise wind" would be an injustice to this work. The artistry of Stormloop, the musical persona of ambient philosopher Kev Spence, possesses an intelligence extending beyond the cold logic of these obvious phrases. With an emphasis on mood and aesthetics Spence avoids melody and rhythm (and any sense of a narrative) for harmony and texture - in an effort to deliberately disorient the listener. He cannot describe this magical frozen region in words, so he uses music. Spare in style, Snowbound spins into one lengthy, captivating hallucination - all things arctic as envisioned by the powers of the mind. The ten vivid tracks combine acoustic approximations of melting ice, crackling campfire flames, cold blasts of air and intercepted radio transmissions with howling electronic whirlwinds, an ethereal choir and minimal synthesized utterances. Beset upon the listener in a most imaginative manner the atmosphere moves between the intensity of a charged vortex to intimate discoveries somewhere among the closing track's plucked guitar notes and poignant spoken words. Those prepared to give Snowbound a close listen will be rewarded with a moody, layered and involving work of distinctive ambient music. Throughout this release Spence as Stormloop is thinking great thoughts while cherishing small treasures - in this world of sound minute details matter.

- Chuck van Zyl/STAR'S END   22 December 2011

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