steering clear of the mainstream
since 2001

june 2010

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info opinion

Mark Bradley

"Shimmer" 3" CDR

Dust Wind Tales

Genre: drone, ambient

October 2009

Another day, another fine ambient mini-CDR from DIY label Dust Wind Tales. This one comes from the very recently prolific Mark Bradley, whose experience in drone music certainly shows on Shimmer. This titillatingly brief release begins with a three-part track, "Ascension," which - true to its title - guides the listener upwards via a rich, ethereal ambience. The first and third parts possess an airy sound reminiscent of work by Biosphere, as well as the ambient releases on Pete Namlook's FAX +49-69/450464 label. Meanwhile, the second part is uncharacteristically dark and brooding, sort of like the sinister hum one might expect in the depths of an ancient boiler room. Following the "Ascension" trilogy, the record concludes with two quick compositions - impeccably beautiful but frustratingly brief "Gone" and surprising "Dawn," which is a backmasked snippet of brooding post-rock - replete with rhythms and even a pseudo-melodic bass part. Despite its unexpected conclusion, Bradley's Shimmer is a terrific little smudge of ambient drone music that has left me craving more - an often frustrating hallmark of any good record.

mark bradley's myspace

Matt Shimmer

[Vitals: 5 tracks, distributed by the label, released 2009]