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Latest from the uber prolific Aidan Baker, of mighty doomdronedirge duo Nadja, and as we've discovered in the past, Nadja is Baker's outlet for the heavier stuff, while working under his own name he tends to veer toward the minimal, ambient and drone side of the spectrum. So that's what we were sort of expecting from this, and while it definitely does lean more toward those sounds that the crush of Nadja, it's actually something else entirely, a solo acoustic record. That's right, just acoustic guitar and voice.
And Baker actually manages to pull it off. He doesn't lace his hushed abstract folk with heaving low end or thick drones, instead he weaves surprisingly lush expanses of minimal drift, and barely there strum, his voice an intimate croon, the sound dark, and doleful, melancholy and moody.
This dark hushes psychedelia stretches out over three songs and two sides, the pace glacial, the guitars buzzing and shimmering, whispery and abstract, there are occasional bits of overdubbing, but used judiciously, to create sweet vocal harmonies, or an unexpected melodic counterpoint. But no matter, the sounds always seem to shift back and settle into something barely there and dreamlike. But this is Baker after all, so on the second side he does manage to coax some buzz and drone and metallic shimmer from those steel strings, and those bits of metallic filigree simply add to the already rich, lush sound, and offer more texture, and another layer of sound to interact with the subtle strum and mumbled croon. Really nice.
LIMITED TO 500 COPIES! Incredibly elaborate packaging too, a striking letter pressed inner sleeve, displayed through a die cut, origami style fold over outer sleeve. Wow. (Aquarius)