This is a tough record for me to review. I’ll say from the start the I’m neither particularly knowledgeable about ambient drone, nor is it a genre that I’ve listened to much (or maybe at all). My approach to this record then, is purely as an appreciator of music.
Based in Christchurch, New Zealand, God Destroyer embodies the idea of ambient drone on this album. Consisting of two tracks—”Ghosts” and “Iñupiat”—the record lasts all of twenty minutes. While each track is layered with subtle layers of electronic noise, “Ghosts” in particular wastes no time actually getting into things. The tempo stays steady, and rather monotonous for the entirety of the track with a repetitive wave of static noise layered on other sounds. With only the faintest trace of variation, you have to scrub back to realize that what you’re hearing is any different from how it all began. “Iñupiat” starts out much quieter and far less dissonant. While there is a crescendo of sorts as the track progresses, it never overwhelms and generally feels much lighter than “Ghosts.” One commonality between the two tracks with a certain monumental feel, as they both paint pictures of abstract landscapes that seem to be all but deserted. In the end, listeners wander desultorily and the mind is left with nothing to grasp on to.
To be completely truthful, I don’t think ambient drone is for me. I appreciate what they have done in terms of crafting soundscapes, but in the end, it’s just not particularly interesting. The music is always in the background, in the sense that it never catches your attention. It never takes center stage to create a reason for me to want to listen more, so I think I’ll pass.
If, however, if ambient drone is your thing, you can download these tracks for free from the Zeronoize website.
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