Jasper TX - Black Sleep [Miasmah - 2008]Dag Rosenqvist is a member of a post-rock group, De La Mancha. With his solo project Jasper TX he moves into a much more atmospheric.
The pieces are for the most part slow ambient / soundtrack type tracks which get constructed quite slowly from quiet starts with little happening except a lethargic keyboard riff or some field recordings. What I like about his pieces is how low in the mix he puts some of the sounds. You know they are there but they are just on that point of being so quiet you could miss them. It’s almost as if he wanted to use subliminals but decided the sounds were too good to be left for the subconscious to be all that could hear them.
There are moments when more melodic events are added to the mix. The last couple of minutes of track one (Black Sleep part 1) sees the arrival of an acoustic guitar and some ethereal sounding voices but heads back into the ambient territory it began in fairly swiftly.
The only track that is markedly different the whole way through is the 3rd one (Black Sleep part 3) where Dag’s post rock influences show through. This track wouldn’t sound out of place on a La Bradford album. Picked guitar, keyboards, very gentle piece. Very beautiful almost, it nicely puts a break in the middle of the more cold and ambient pieces.
It’s a very accomplished album but if I was looking for negative points I would have to say the last track (unsurprisingly called Black Sleep part 6) spends too long doing absolutely nothing for the first six minutes of its existence. It’s almost like listening to a dusty needle stuck in the run out groove of an LP just making a low rumbling sound. The track itself is fine once it gets going and moves into the familiar slow keyboard motif just needs to have the beginning edited a bit. David Bourgoin