The Smu Reviews

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Music / Art / Pop Culture

Discordant beauty.

Words like ambient, instrumental or soundscape are often used to mean the  kind of blandly soothing music you stick on in the background whilst doing the crossword, but although this is an often beautiful and delicate album, it’s also frequently a deeply unsettling one too. 

From the background chatter of children in decrescent to the intense sense of creeping dread in tracks like 4;28 and, the standout track for me, Uchujin there is not much about this album I would describe as soothing. In fact, a lot of it straight up gives me The Fear. I mean this in a good way of course, it’s perfectly done and I assume deliberate. There are shades of late era Scott Walker and the kind of skin crawling unease I get from David Lynch soundtracks but crucially it’s also underscored with a fragile, melodic elegance and it never tips into something unlistenable or aggressive. 

An elegantly put together and thoughtful collection that I feel like I’m still only scraping the surface of despite having played it frequently over the last month since I received my (charmingly hand packaged) copy through the post.  If you are a fan of either the eerie or ambient music in general I can’t recommend this enough. 

TITLE: Antiseptic
MOOD: Soundtrack for your anxiety
TOP TRACKS: Uchujin, 4;28, (bonus track) Jónas