Snow Palms – Intervals

Of course the use of instruments like a reed organ or a harmonium helps set the tone, as do the lachrymose strings ...but in these things are very much part of a whole, and that whole is a warm, rich experience.

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A beautiful release, one that is simple, and very accessible. Despite the usual guff that gets bandied about with these sorts of releases, (multi-instrumentation, polyrhythms, important collaborations, blah blah), what we feel you need to know is that it’s a very, very soothing and often inspiring listen. Of course the use of instruments like a reed organ or a harmonium helps set the tone, as do the lachrymose strings; (appearing in force on tracks like Atoll and Motion Capture) but in these things are very much part of a whole, and that whole is a warm, rich experience; well-constructed and designed to keep you in a state of stasis however clever the arrangements.

Sometimes the accent is on the beauty of a particular sound; In Camera’s simplicity and sparseness is one case in point, the rippling effects created by the synth and omnichord are entrancing and, sadly all too short in duration. Still, when the track is followed by a dreamscape like Index of Rivers no-one is complaining. This track has something of the Eno-Lanois collaboration about it, back in the 80’s it would have been released on E’G for sure. The prettiness reaches its apogee with White Sea, a charming piece forever revolving round a very simple melodic axis: and one which is almost sugar-coated enough to be on something like the Amelie soundtrack. Of course this coy tiptoeing is incredibly charming too: with a sort of Left Bank pixie dust gently settling about the whole composition. Sometimes things can – by reason of their shy and retiring nature – pass you by (step forward Swimming Figures and Light Museum) but this doesn’t mean these tracks are only sketched in, given time they are just as charming, Light Museum having something of the precision of Michael Nyman about it.

So there it is; in essence, a beautiful record. No more words needed, guv.