Sunday, May 29, 2022

An Laurence - Almost Touching [People Places Records 033]

Put out on the circuit via Jersey-based imprint People Places Records on May 20th, 2k22 is "Almost Touching", the latest longplay outing by Montreal vocalist x guitarist x performer An Laurence who's been teaming up with a set of contemporary composers for the realisation and completion of this extended album effort. Rolled out over the course of a full 2CD set and a total playtime of roughly 97 minutes An Laurence works with and along the likes of Amy Brandon, Kim Farris-Manning, Elischa Kaminer, Shelley Marwood and Arthur Keegan-Bole to explore a realm of experimental contemporary composition reaching from the eerie, distorted and ever meandering electronic textures and tender floating piano lines of the albums opener "Artificial Light" to the stripped down (Neo)Classical minimalisms of the title piece "Almost Touching" which suddenly moves towards a more agitated and intense climax placing it more in an Avantgarde realm of sorts whereas the subset of seven pieces making up "Chants D'Amour" provides a range from Spoken Word to naturalistic, almost medieval bits as well as raw, gnarly and hyperintense synth sequences to be found in "Introduction" which is by far our favorite cut on this entire album alongside the intricately layered vocals and apocalyptic industrial transmission that make up "III Chanson Pour M". Furthermore pieces like "V Chant D'Amour" bring forward a beautifully dreamy and enchanted LeftfieldFolk attitude once again evolving into raw and heavy, EDM-infused offkilter synth drama and even Psychedelic Rock realms before "Reconciling Duality" weighs in some highly abstract, fragmented and minimalist Flamenco vibes for a change just to name a few. Defo one album which, even though at home in an Avantgarde-leaning realm, is accessible and comprehensible for a wider audience looking to explore further out on the fringes of experimental music. Check.

Album artwork on Instagram!


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