Marc Namblard - F.Guyana [Gruenrekorder - 2017]F.Guyana is a collection of soothing, detailed, often layered, and lush field recordings from forests and the costal regions of French Guiana. The CD appears on the always dependable & quality bound German label Gruenrekorder- either as a CD( which I’m reviewing), or as a digital release that features a bonus batch of tracks.
The CD comes in a four panel digipak , and this takes in hazy pictures of the Guiana jungles. We also get a wonderfully inlay booklet, which takes in moody-to- brightly coloured photos of the wildlife & natural landscapes of French Guiana. As well as a small write up for each track, described at what time of day they where recorded, and what wildlife & natural sounds are involved in each tracks make up.
All the recordings on the release where made & edited by French field recordist & artists Marc Namblard. And I must say he has both a fine ear for interesting sounds, as well as an ability to know when & where to finish a track. Both of course are vital to making a good field recording album, that's fascinating & re-playable- and that’s exactly what F.Guyana is.
The CD takes in eleven tracks, & these have running times between three & fourteen minutes- with an album total runtime of seventy two minutes. Over hour worth of field recordings may seem a little much, but Namblard keeps you captivated through-out, with the wonderful selection of unique & soothing sounds. As we’ve come to expect from a Gruenrekorde release- the recording quality through the release is crystal clear, detailed & perfect balanced.
The album opens in fine lush & soothing fashion with the track “Awala”- this just under six minute piece takes in a recording of the coast at dusk- bringing together the rich layers of crash & foaming sea, with a back drop of crickets & the sound of a gentle breeze blowing the palm trees.
Track three “Crique Popote, Cacicus Cela”- is taken at daybreak, and offers up just over nine minutes of detailed & complex map of sound- taking in the manic twittering sound of yellow-rumpled Cacique Caw, Guiana red Howler Monkeys call, and the constant hissing of Cicadas.
Track nine “Kaw Mountain, Post-Explosive breeding” is nearing six minute of Alien like chippings, cascading layers of chirping, with a underlying & distant selection of more random twitters & chip. This track truly sounds so alien & surreal in it’s make-up, really taking your breath away with both it’s complex layers & detail.
I’ve now been playing F.Guyana on & off for last month or so, and each time I come to it again it’s sounds as fresh, vibrate, and rewarding as before. It’s one of the field recording highlights of 2017- that will be of interest to both field recording fans, as well as those who are fan of more textured sound composition too. Roger Batty