Dr. Guilty / Paul Mitchell :: Double review (Elephant)

Both tapes explore melody extension, sometimes overly stretching it into outright repetition.

dr-guilty-p-mitchel_featEvenings are getting shorter. Jumpers are returning. The kids are back in school. Another Summer has passed and the prospect of extended hours indoors looms. Bit of Ambient music might be able help sooth that oncoming post-Summer blues. London based Elephant Recordings is on hand to help.

Newcomer Dr Guilty is on-call with some cassette medication entitled Caged Panoramas. Gabriele Quartero introduces himself with “Distant Balconnade.” The track whispers into being, breathing near silence through speakers. Half-formed strings ghost across a forgotten audio ruin. Shimmers, glimpses, of notes fade and rise in this mist shrouded piece. A dense fog of sound permeates the entire outing. “Everything’s So Quiet” ambles on shifting tides, the track slowly ebbing and flowing with gentle strings. Night pervades the album, “Mesa” haunting with floating bars as hollow sounds recede into shadow. “Like Waves In An Old Movie” finishes the cassette as it began, in a whirling pool of thick ambience.

Mitchell finally appears on his own label with Outside Perspective. The tape is broken into two lengthy pieces. The A-Side is a bar expanding project, harmonies reaching into recesses. Mitchell curves a singular tone, bending it with refracted touch and subtle movements. The track, at some twenty eight minutes in length, is extremely atmospheric and a serious undertaking. The flip continues the arc, Mitchell sending the listener skyward as he beams a further half hour of analogue absorption.

Both tapes explore melody extension, sometimes overly stretching it into outright repetition. Both are filled with resonating warmth—Dr Guilty with his light shuffles and Mitchell with his prolonged harmonics. The Ambient equivalent of a nice hot whisky on a sleet swept day. Now to find that chair.

Both releases are available on Elephant.

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