NEAR THE PARENTHESIS: Music For The Forest Concourse (n5MD)


Posted on Jun 7th 2010 12:42 am

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Near The Parenthesis: Music For The Forest Concourse

Music For The Forest Concourse
n5MD 2010
12 Tracks. 61mins49secs

Amazon UK: CD | DLD US: CD | DLD Boomkat: DLD iTunes: DLD

Surfing the wave of lush cinematic electronic music, Near The Parenthesis’s Tim Arndt has, in the space of three records, refined a very personal style, which often relies heavily on sumptuous soundscapes and sweeping melodies. With his latest effort, Music For The Forest Concourse, released on n5MD, the San Francisco-based producer and musician has taken this to a very different level, as he adds elegant piano sections to this exquisitely layered compositions to greatly accentuate the evocative power of his music.

While his work as Near The Parenthesis has always been primarily electronic-based, Arndt has, over the years, played guitar and piano in several bands, and has occasionally incorporated some of these in his solo work. Here though, he has deliberately taken the step of creating music that would largely rely on piano-led melodies, which, placed over delicate electronic backdrops, create, throughout the record, a particularly effective dreamy setting. Arndt’s sonic constructions are often extremely dense and complex affairs here, and it is difficult to identify exactly what is happening at any particular moment, yet these are rather expertly assembled to never overwhelm or intend to dazzle. Instead, they only serve to bind each piece together and create a universe unique to this record. Such enterprise can sometimes lead to overindulgence, and this album occasionally comes to it, but Arndt keeps it all under control by ensuring his compositions do not extend unnecessarily.

The opening and closing tracks, Good Evening and Good Night, appear to suggest that Music For The Forest Concourse is a nocturnal record, something that is also in some way conveyed by the use of down tempo rhythmic sections, gentle melodies, smooth soundscapes and occasional distant voices which can be spotted as they dissipate. There is a certain melancholy in Arndt’s work which is particularly potent here, especially on tracks such as Good Evening, Pollarding Trees, Within An Orbit, Inertia (Stay Right Here) or closing piece Good Night. This gives the album an undeniable consistence, but it also means that it all tends to sound a tad too uniform, with no truly memorable moments to show for. And this is very much the problem here. While the tracks are all extremely beautifully put together and produced, the album lacks focal points and eventually appears to wander aimlessly within what becomes a much too restrictive template.


Near The Parenthesis | n5MD
Amazon UK: CD | DLD US: CD | DLD Boomkat: DLD iTunes: DLD

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