It's tempting to wait for the "pros" to review ambio's first album, 'tentations'.
My ears, after all, are unaccustomed to such barbaric electronic assaults!
And I lack the required jargon.
François the Netwiz once called some of it "cheese".
No. I enjoy it, Mr Demeyer, and as you threatened, the CD is better still than the version I heard in the making several months ago.
The music Olivier Aubin and François have made comes as welcome aural balm, especially after maddening workdays, when I have been simultaneously escaping into Alan Lomax's unrelated, gloriously ghost-written "autobiography" of 'Mr Jelly Roll: The Fortunes of Jelly Roll Morton, New Orleans Creole and [self-proclaimed] Inventor of Jazz'.
Now Aubin and Demeyer have released Temptations, they've classified it "New Age" for the benefit of category makers, but 'ambio' is a good name for their team and a nod and a wink or two to Tangerine Dream and Pink Floyd are the most obvious tributes an "old" pair of ears hears in the music.
In a relaxing début together -- was François joking when he hinted that one idea was to nurse the listener to sleep? -- this gifted pair borrowed from Baudelaire for the title track and offer new "atmosphère, atmosphère", very well recorded, and often warmth in music distant from some of the enjoyable "frenetronica" coming down the wires from a buzzing Berlin.
You can sample it for yourself with the mp3 offerings on the 'ambio' website, which offers a broad idea of what they're about with names like 'bali beach' and 'gift to shiva', but my own current favourite is the sequence of 'cyclops', 'loungerine' and 'megapops' tracks that forms the backbone of the disc.
Broad waves of colour and an astute treatment of minimalist rhythmic material are worked up particularly well here into climactic swells and splashes which sweep you elsewhere. But not to bed.
Lounge music? Sometimes. Trance? if you like. Relaxing? Certainly, at least to the listener, if not always in the making, it would seem!
I've previously mentioned Jehan Legac, the digital artist whose 'War is Over' -- minus the prominent balls -- served as the basis for the artwork totally appropriate to the music.
The Kid didn't like the back cover juxtaposition of the 'ambio' green with candybar pink for the album title. Neither would I if it didn't reflect the humour evident in the easy listening, a humour insufficiently innocent to be completely childlike.
An unpretentious, talented start for Aubin and Demeyer, 'tentations' is worth the diversion. Thanks, guys.
9:45:59 PM link