* * * * * Maps & Diagrams – Delius * * * * *
The sixth release from Tel Aviv’s False Industries sees a new mini-album from Maps and Diagrams entitled ‘Delius’ available in digital only format… Tim Martin has been releasing under the Maps and Diagrams moniker for a good ten years now, and he’s showing no sign of losing steam with this latest on the False Industries label.
A far cry from the percussive crunchiness of his earlier material, ‘Delius’ is as cool and glassy as a Fox’s Glacier mint, and probably more refreshing too. There’s a fuzzy analogue glow to Martin’s recordings, and ‘Delius’ shows this off better than ever – even in the coldest, most cavernous moments you get the sense that Martin may have bounced everything to tape just to round off those harsh edges a little.
There’s plenty of ‘ambient’ music around right now, but this is one of those rare albums that does more than enough to make you forget the term basically means you shouldn’t be paying attention. Martin’s got enough tension and even noisiness ( check the odd tumble of ‘Child of the Cavern’ ) to keep you coming back for more again and again. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.
Martin often roughens the smooth sheen of his ambient drones with grainy industrial textures. He also generally excludes beats in the six tracks, even if the clicking pulses in “Child of the Cavern” and “The Last Man on Earth” suggest ties to earlier Maps and Diagrams releases. In keeping with their titles, “Sylvan Spring” is characterized by warm, enveloping swathes of synthetic sound, while “Avalanche” finds billowing vapours gradually building to a climax before deflating. An occasional field recording works its way into the material, and consequently a softly whistling meditation such as “Novachord Spectrum” assumes a somewhat pastoral quality that strengthens its connection to the natural world.
The material repeatedly resists settling into straightforward, easily definable structures; a piece such as “Child of the Cavern,” for instance, unfolds unpredictably, as if the material itself is determining in the moment which path to take. A similar approach characterizes “Yriarte” and “The Last Man on Earth,” which suggest that a fitting reference point for Delius is Fennesz, whose music likewise develops fluidly rather than fits into simple, predetermined structures. All in all, Delius impresses as an understated set whose occasional rough textural treatments can’t hide the gentle heart beating at its core.
Artist – Maps & Diagrams
Album – Delius [ * * * * * ]
Release Date – 2012
Genre – Ambient, Drone, Experimental, Minimal, Experimental-drone [ AWESOME STUFF ]
01 – Sylvan Spring
02 – Avalanche
03 – Child of the Cavern
04 – Yriarte
05 – Novachord Spectrum
06 – The Last Man on Earth
Maps & Diagrams – Delius
Recommendations: ~ Eluvium ~ Ender ~ A Storm Of Light ~ Ghastly City Sleep ~ Landing
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