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CD Feature/ asher: "the depths, the colors, the objects & the silence"

img  Tobias

There are moments when you suddenly realize the overwhelming beauty and a wonderful sense of organisation and necessity in a world otherwhise perceived as chaotic, tumultous and generally unfriendly. It can happen in a supermarket, in the heat of the Grand Canyon at noon, while drinking your morning cup of coffee or while watching a soccer game in a packed stadium. On “the depths, the colors, the objects & the silence”, it happens when you open your window to the noises outside, to the holler on the streets in the heart of the city.

This not only mirrors a general development within the experimental electronic community of incorporating the sounds around us in a concrete and recognisable way instead of alluding to them with musical metaphors. It is also a recognisable tendency of the work of Asher Thal-Nir over the last couple of releases. More and more, his music is leaving the realms of abstraction and turning towards concretion, palpability and recognition. On “Graceful Degradation”, old tape recordings of Asher playing a worn-out piano sent sensitive postcards from the past and “Invisible Landscapes” harked back to melody and harmony. With “the depths...”, an album which sits comfortably between its two predecessors, only harmony has survived and entered a relationship with urban field recordings of people walking, muffled voices, cars driving by and aeroplanes hovering in the distance. Thal-Nir builds all of his tracks using these raw noises as a basis, adding a single element only per piece and gradually increasing the viscocity, sometimes lingering in the same sensation for more than twenty minutes. It is not structural development that guids his gaze, but occurances, the will of the moment. On “partly framed in sunlight” and “the blue gently linked”, this creative spark will manifests itself in fleetingly shimmering harmonics, fibrosive chords hanging in the air like the scent of a sweet perfume or the smell of flowers. On “plastic dusk”, then, all that remains is a faint beacon, a warm hum that is as comforting as a lullaby or a hot water bottle.

As with previous efforts, “the depths, the colors, the objects & the silence” feeds from the strict adherence to a sole principle, from the idea that all of these scenes are actual and real, because they are subject to the same catalyst. Its real charm, however, stems from the way that Asher crafts the tracks, drawing the listener’s attention to hidden links and connected cycles between the constituent elements of his field recordings by the mere addition of a brush stroke. In his world, the streets are singing softly – in yours, too, if you open the windows and allow the city into your heart.

By Tobias Fischer

Homepage: Asher Thal-Nir at MySpace
Homepage: Mystery Sea Records

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