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Adrian Dziewanski - Island Terminus [Gruenrekorder/Gruen Digital - 2013]

“Island Terminus” is a 2 track album by Adrian Dziewanski. Recorded over the the span of 6 weeks, the album is Mr. Dziewanski’s attempt at capturing Tinnitus as songs. Yes, Tinnitus, the equivalent of an aural hangover after a long night of live music. Working with the musical hallucination, as he put it, he wanted to achieve the sensation of having a song stuck in the listeners head to the extreme. Does he succeed? Maybe....maybe not. What he does deliver is over 40 minutes of well-crafted and engaging field recordings taken over a series of ferry rides.

The artwork presented with the release are all beautifully captured photos, no doubt from Mr. Dziewanski’s nautical travels. The cover shot is a close up of thick metal rope, likely acting as railing to one of the ferries he rode. Photos of sunsets, mountain ranges, docks, all serve this release well.
A great work of fiction should be able to transport the reader to a different place and time.  Likewise well done field recordings have the similar effect on me. Perhaps the audio medium even more so, since it’s a wholly immersive experience for me. In the 2 tracks that make up “Island Terminus” we are met with crashing waves, gusting winds, and atmospheric soundscapes.
You’re a lone traveler aboard your sailing vessel. The quiet sea air bristles along your ears as a portent to heavier weather ahead. The wind picks up and increasingly raps on the hull of your vessel like an uninvited guest. It’s you versus the elements. Storm clouds build, tidal waves smack and crash, and in the distance a seagull struggles to stay airborne. The elements build, looking to capsize your now fragile vessel. You batten down the hatches determined to ride it out. There’s nothing out there, just the faint glow of a lighthouse calling you back. Before you know it, the storm clouds recede and then it’s back to a quiet respite.
I may not be experiencing Tinnitus right now, but it was an exhilarating ride. I look forward to more of Mr. Dziewanski’s soundscapes down the road. Till then I’ll give “Island Terminus” another spin and get lost at sea.

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

Hal Harmon
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