Music: Eric Holm – Surface Variations (Subtext, 2020)

As a sound artist and composer Holm started back in 2014 with his first record „Andøya“ it was made from contact mic recordings of pylons carrying communications cables that connected listening stations on an Arctic Norwegian island. Eric Holm‘s new album reflects on his time spent underwater. A series of field recordings captured both above and below the surfaces.

With his new album „Surface Variations“ Holm creates an intimate atmosphere via oceanic sounds and rhythms taken from mechanical diving apparatuses. It connects the dissonances between humanity and nature in such a perfect way. It starts with the wide open field recordings from „Phorcys“ to imagine this special underwater atmosphere. It combines nature sounds with a tone of science fiction elements. „Sagara“ starts with way more distortion and drone elements and a nice interplay between light and darkness. Here you can feel the mystery of the ocean with a sort of meditation. With „Alioth“ the main tone switches in a more dark tone area with his stomping rhythm. It‘s a very unique and special track wich such an exciting flow. „Opalescence“ on the other hand brings the light back an stage. With a variety of elements here. It feels a bit weightless, like you are lost in space or between two worlds with a peak at the end. Difficult to describe in words but it reminds me on the last William Basinski (One Time Out of Time) from last year. The next one „Salp“ draws a different picture without changes the album main-tone. It starts with nature field recordings and combine it with a great ambient tone. To complete „Surface Variations“ the stomping „Trifolium“ marks an great end. To describe it in just one sentence: „Driftign alone, the sea becomes a timeless space for contemplation, a place to dream of new futures whilst reconciling the flotsam of the past (Bandcamp)“. What a fantastic record, highly recommended!

Rating: 5 out of 5.

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Dominik Scheuring

I'm living and working in Hamburg, Germany. My interests are all about music, movies, and traveling. I also do some typical sport activities like fitness, running and swimming.

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