With his musical compositions realized from a reverence for the natural world, Thom Brennan hopes to help restore the habitat of human thought. His CD Imaginary Conquests (70'59") is perfectly in tune with itself and its maker. Luxuriating in the contours of harmony, Brennan finds a form of life in contemporary electronic textures. Each of the four tracks seem like a singular flowing thought - each asking us to tune into a unique, quieter frequency. Electric ribbons of sound sing of a synthetic landscape in sustaining chords, interlocking tone patterns and ethereal effects. With layer upon layer of arpeggio triads and tetrads, the entrances and introductions of subdivided rhythms settle the listener into a lulling reverie. Ringing melodies and rounded notes unfurl steadily, sweeping us away in an enveloping sense of magic. A spirited energy of consonant complexion and spiraling spacey effects imbue this music with a cerebral energy, while pulsing lines of echoing sequencer scales run parallel to one another in increasing levels of intricacy. In constant transition, these patterns seem just like the world in which we live. Simple in its construction, but endlessly complex in effect, Imaginary Conquests manages to sustain our imagination over a prolonged span. From its silvery and warm tones to a humming, gently charged atmosphere, Brennan's synthesizer expressions draw us into his realm completely. So often do we humans look to music and art - and also to nature - for that which we are not able to find within ourselves. Imaginary Conquests is a deep musical environment meant as much for contemplating such mysteries as it is for guiding those merely adrift.
- Chuck van Zyl/STAR'S END 9 May 2019