From his base on the Isle Of Man, Simon Pott has been composing modular synth music for a little over a decade. In 2017, with the idea of combining his more experimental compositions with his more beat driven music, Pott started recording as Isvisible/Isinvisible. From his dark and twisted Isvisible debut album, “Ghosts Of Furness Vale,” delightfully inspired by horror soundtracks, it was apparent that Pott’s Isvisible concept of melting the melodies with expressive, experimental improvisations, works extremely well.
Coming forward to 2021 and Moon-White Water is Simon Pott’s fifth album as Isvisible/Isinvisible. It’s released as a download and limited edition vinyl on the Kent based, independent label, Burning Witches Records. The nine songs were composed using modular synths, vintage effects and drum machines sourced from the late 70s and early 80s and like most of Pott’s Isvisible music, it was recorded live and amazingly, with no overdubs.
From the opening song “The Ravens Head” it’s evident that Pott’s has been influenced by the heavy weights of the post punk era. There is a touch of Joy Division, Siouxsie Sioux, Magazine and early Cure. On the Bunnymen-esque “Year Of The Ancients” it sounds as if Robert Smith is down in the subway, plucking along on his guitar to Pott’s driving rhythm. These post punk influences are mixed skillfully with Isvisible’s musical characteristics. The wonderful free flowing bleeps and buzzes, the drone like soundscapes and almost stepper like leads that are all rapped perfectly around Pott’s synth pop melodies. The songs are short, compact and direct, they sound more like an album of strong, stand alone singles, yet the vibe is consistent and they coherently flow together.
On songs like the swaggering “Luna Stills” and the insistent “Salt Fire” Pott’s creates solid hypnotic grooves capable of filling dark dance floors. While on the superb “Under The Still Lake” the mid tempo bleeps and beats are crafted around a hook so large it’s impossible not to be caught by it.
The title track “Moon-White Water” is as close to an instrumental ballad as Isvisible will ever get. There is a real romance to the song, with the drums, soft and low in the mix, a simple repeating snatched hook is hidden under layers of swooping and soaring synth strings, surprisingly emotive.
The closing song “Alchemical Travelogue” is a slightly different sounding beast. Running twice as long as anything else on Moon-White Water and decidedly more 80s in sound, it’s Isinvisible jamming out in a synth prog style. It’s impossible not to hear the “Alchemical Travelogue” and not visualize the closing song of a live set, the lights going crazy as one by one, the band members leave the stage, accompanied by rapturous applause.
Moon-White Water is an excellent free flowing electronic music album. It’s driven by its sublime beats and glorious melodies. The late 70s post punk sound has inspired Simon Pott’s to make a modern, modular synth album sound distinctly different, whilst also feeling strangely familiar. One for fans of forward thinking electronic sounds.