by Matt Howarth, Sonic Curiosity
Released in a limited edition in 1999, the 3 CD set ASCENSION OF SHADOWS has become a prized collector's item for Roach / Obmana fans. This CD is disc 1 of that release, offering 71 minutes of murky ambience, performed live in a Belgium studio in 1997. (The remaining discs will be reissued soon.)
From the titles involved in this recording, one can assume that darkness plays a vital role, and that those shadows stem from a foreign realm.
There's only one gigantic track on this CD, and it begins (as one might expect) with a slowburn opening, exhibiting patience and deliberation as the ethereal electronic textures filter into being and coalesce into a soothing harmonic flow.
Peripheral mists draw close, caressing the core soundscape with their feathery disposition. Distant spirits sigh, announcing their imminent proximity like seaside sirens calling to passing ships. By the time they arrive in force, their outcries are carefully subdued, blending perfectly with the placid temperament of the music.
The ebb and flow of these tonalities generates a tranquil tension that hints at deeper secrets.
There are no faint rhythms this time, and if any instruments other than machinery are employed herein, their resonance is too processed to be discernible.
In all honesty, there's not much murkiness involved in this music. The tonalities are crisp and often radiant, rising to a steadfast glory before gradually melting into the next array of sonorous textures.