SubtractiveLAD :: Valve & Ellipsis double review (Self-released)

Valve and Ellipsis follow a similar musical register where flexible tones, dense layers of sounds and aerial guitars lead the listener to a personal quest, to a feeling of deep quietness, flying the vast inner cosmical immensity.

Stephen Hummell (aka SubtractiveLAD) is a multifaceted ambient based guitarist and quite prolific sound producer in the universe of DIY and digital music world. I pleasantly discovered his work with the levitating and shimmering Sustain / Release (2017). Two of his last releases to date (Valve and Ellipsis) follow a similar musical register where flexible tones, dense layers of sounds and aerial guitars lead the listener to a personal quest, to a feeling of deep quietness, flying the vast inner cosmical immensity.


SubtractiveLAD :: Valve (Self-released)

This EP delivers an accomplished musical traverse through post-minimalism and process music, coming along with space-ambient electronica. The opening piece is quite representative, developing an endless streams of acoustic notes progressively covered by electronic oscillations which bring to the fore a hypnotic tendency. The music is constantly moving and demonstrates a certain plasticity with electronic bodies in perpetual interaction. The multi-textured soundscapes are punctuated by strongly emotional if not sorrowful electric guitar melodies. Agitated electronic grooves are tempered by an alignment of flowing and soothing guitar sequences. Valve is a contemplative, moodily introspective and intentionally post-modern ambient release which breaks out stylistic frontiers. It launches a bridge between the music of Tangerine Dream, Expo 70, Steve Reich and modern days electronic downtempo music and pop ambient (Klimek et al.)


SubtractiveLAD :: Ellipsis (Self Released)

Ellipsis presents a beautiful and alluring Eno-esque ambient musical trip, delivering an exquisite and vaporous mind travel for detached repetitive guitar notes, lively synthesized dreamscapes and cosmical electronic interferences. As for Sustain / Release, the result presents similitudes with the Eno / Fripp collaboration. Ellipsis is based on an ocean of gently floating guitar tricks, an meditative ambient tones to reach a pick of inner tranquility. A recommended listening experience for meditative times.

TAGS: , , , , ,

Comments are closed.