Tape Loop Orchestra’s ambient concrète aesthetic coalesces clammy choral swells and bombed-out, buried percussion in the second of a new two-part project following 2019’s ‘Interiors’ series. The second part of TLO’s current cycle comes down from the windswept heights of Vol.1 to settle in a more valleyed state of contemplation. Operating around 20bpm, the music on ‘Returning Two’ evokes his ideas on consolidating mind and body from a lower altitude and perspective where the choral winds die down and stealthily leave listeners to their own thoughts.
On this volume the sounds are less vertiginous and more pooled into solemn stasis, with choral notes gently scudding the surface of dappled and dripping piano keys and foggy bass that appears to spread out and cocoon us in its immanent glow. ‘Thinking Flesh’ follows with a denser sound, with reverbs trimmed to a clammy closeness and powered by a thicker heartbeat of bass, eventually resolving into some of the project’s most deliberate melodic arrangements that find his thread of logic gathering into a woolly fabric that again calls to mind the supernatural explorations of fellow Pennine artist, Sam McLoughlin aka Tongues of Light as much as a decayed, weatherbeaten Arvo Pärt.