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Mirko Uhlig - Tupelo [Gruenrekorder - 2011]

You know that feeling you get, when you are roused from a deep slumber quite suddenly and the realm of dreams bleeds through to your waking existence, resulting in a constant battle of wills to keep yourself from slipping back into that comfortable cocoon of blissful catharsis? That feeling could be used to sum up the effects of this digital release from German soundscape and drone artist Mirko Uhlig perfectly.

Patching together digital synthesis with organic sound–bytes Mirko Uhlig enthrals us with his almost masterful ability to steal you away from the mundane and tangible, taking you by the hand and leading you on a  deep and meandering journey through another reality entirely. Co-founder of Ex Ovo Records, Mirko Uhlig performed earlier works under the guise of   ‘Aalfang Mit Pferdekopf’ (Catching Eels with a Horse’s Head) focusing more on rawer sounds and a straight up sound collage approach, before refining and toning down his sound to create the works we bear witness to here.

If you are looking for something which shatters the boundaries of modern composition, this is not the place you will find it, but what the album does capture is the absolute essence of pure, undiluted minimalism and breath-taking atmospheres combined with a rich tapestry of intriguing sounds and otherworldly notions. Soothing tones signal the start of the album, before breaking into the first of two epic tracks which both push over the ten minute barrier, blending field recordings with ethereal drones and digitised fleets of fancy. Sitting somewhere between the more transcendent moments of Cindytalk, Asva and Fennesz, ‘Loosing Teeth’ certainly is on par with such works by these exemplary artists of the experimental scene and sets up the album perfectly. ‘Lurking Teeth’ is by far one of the most alluring pieces on the release, a constant battle between crackling bursts of electricity and uplifting, pastoral ambience form the basis of the track, whilst small snippets of reality are shown to the listener to develop that sense of earthly connection amongst the dreamlike melee. Towards the end of the release we have two tracks which work together as a whole, namely ‘Losing Teeth’ and ‘Soot Tea’, winding down the release with more relaxed waves of synth like pulses and stripped back ambience, slowly becoming less disorientating that the pieces that preceded and leaves you feeling at peace, like you have undergone some kind of spiritual cleansing process through digital means.

Overall there are some very interesting techniques and ideas at play here and the production is clean and to the point, making for a very pleasurable listening experience, you can grab yourself a copy of this digital only release now from the good folk at gruenrekorder.de

Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5

Todd Robinson
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