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04'06 INTERVIEW
Mountains Interview
Mountaigns

Nightmares On Wax Interview
Nightmares On Wax

Trunk Records Interview
Trunk Records

04'06 FEATURES
Biosphere / Egbert Mittelstädt live
Biosphere / Egbert Mittelstädt Live

03'06 INTERVIEW
Jimmy Edgar Interview
Jimmy Edgar

Clark Interview
Clark

04'06 REVIEWS
Luigi Archetti
Bird Show
Caroline
Depth Affect
Dextro
Dictaphone
Glissandro 70
Kieran Hebden & Steve Reid
International Peoples Gang
Izu
Kyler
Loka
Lionel Marchetti
Miller + Fiam
Matmos
Modern Institute
Same Actor
Thomas Strønen
Terrestrial Tones
Uniform
Vizier Of Damascus
Zeebee

04'06 COMPILATIONS
Pop Ambient

04'06 SHORT CUTS
Alog
Christ.
Fisk Industries
Winter North Atlantic
Chin Chin

 
   
   
   
 
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BIRD SHOW
Lightening Ghost

KRANK093
Kranky 2006
09 Tracks. 43mins01secs

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Lightening Show is marked by audacious, disorienting arrangements that stir and entrance the listener with their shamanistic ambience. Essentially a solo effort, this work enables Ben Vida, who is also a member of Town And Country, to indulge in more eclectic, personal whims. In this vein, Beautiful Spring is underpinned by harmonium drones, the shadows of a murky bass, and the placid repetition of rising piano arpeggios, conveying a strong World Music dimension. It is an element that bleeds into numerous other works, such as Field On Water, and the more raucous Seeds, which introduce a bevy of other clunky instruments, from ringing mandolins, to scraggy walls of electric viola.

Thankfully, pieces are ordered precisely enough to save this album from those who might be tempted to cry, ¨kitsch!¨ The title track, for instance, starts off with reverberating walls of sound pierced by twittering percussion, only to halfway through suddenly perform an act of deconstruction on itself, removing all but the key elements, and then carrying the track on for a few minutes with this elegant, fractal structure. These moments are interspersed with more confrontational outbursts, such as those found on First Path Through, which is an exercise in upper register electronics - the piece becomes more intense and ecstatic as the timbres gradually ascend higher and higher as though a monk slowly reaching a state of enlightenment.

This spell is somewhat broken by Greet The Morning, which sees this album come back down to earth from its hallucinogenic state. Rather than lose itself in a volatile swirl of flute and mountains of escalating sound, the song treads through more conventional folk-rock territories, linked back to the other works only by the slight spray of guitar feedback. This atmosphere takes root with the final two songs, which similarly display gentle guitar strumming, patterned with tinkling bells, steely drones, and the odd meditative whisper spilling out over the proceedings. It is an ending that does not quite take in and sum up all of that which came before, but it does reaffirm Vida's ability to work in a variety of settings, often to a pleasing result.

Max Schaefer

3.2/5

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TRACKLIST

Field On Water
Pilz
Seeds
First Path Through
Beautiful Spring
Lightning Ghost
Greet The Morning
On The Beach
Sleepers Keep Sleeping

BEN VIDA / BIRD SHOW Discography

THE SURFER'S GUIDE TO BEN VIDA / BIRD SHOW
Kranky

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