Best Albums of 2019: Ethereal Ephemera ‘In The Mysterious Distance’

In The Mysterious Distance (Bandcamp)

The talented and insanely prolific Mancunian Brin Coleman wears many masks – I count at least nine – and his Ethereal Ephemera alias seems reserved for his most, well, what it says on the tin. In The Mysterious Distance is a 43-minute piece of harmonic ambient blessed with a purity of tone and a sense of utter stillness that has me returning to it regularly, particularly at night before bed when I’m trying quieten my brain’s ceaseless chatter. It also has a remarkable emotional undertow, a kind of longing, an unknowable feeling of awe. This is ‘generative’ music of sorts, where elements are set in motion by a human and then left alone, with the musical development coming from random combinations of those elements. He explains: “This piece is improvised and recorded live using three virtual tape loops of different lengths. I improvise a slow section with a few notes into these three loops which then repeat at slightly different times to create new music from the original source. Everything is played on electric guitar with an ebow.” Brin also records under the better-known alias Bing Satellites, whose masterful Blue Skies & Cherry Blossom (2018) is another addictive example of his gift for deep, drifting harmony.

Best Albums of 2019 Reviews Index

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