Monday, February 10, 2014

Nagual - Nagual (ERG-005)

from the top shelf with love. peace and love to my friends at Humboldt Relief :)

 For me, the most pleasing long-form tracks tend to be enthralling - the blooming of awareness; in essence, the music becomes an integral attribute of the environment. The self-titled album from Nagual on Ergot Records engages the listener on various levels. Utilizing an array of instruments - guitars, piano, bass, percussion - Ian McColm and David Shapiro visit the evocative vista of "Honey River Lacquer" before transitioning to the album's masterpiece, "Sweat Raag". These structured improvisations develop subtly, with the artists exhibiting acuity regarding pace and in infusing the tracks with intriguing elements. "Sweat Raag" exemplifies everything that is great about the fifth release from Ergot. The disquiet builds deliberately as electronics crackle and loops slowly coalesce. An attentive listener will realize the slow ascent laced with tension, the winds of uncertainty which leave a chill on one's shoulders as the zenith seems imminent. Soon the pace increases and the energy writhes, exhibiting urgency. McColm's propulsive percussion at the end is the culmination of an excellent side of music. The evanescent, airy vibrations of the opener, "Honey River Lacquer" are fantastic. Looped piano, punctuated by percussion, echoes in the head. Shortly, electronics wriggle and the room is permeated by thick, resonant low ends; the perfect complement arrives in the form of deep, lustrous beams of sonic light - lovely! The flip features the sidelong, "Continuous Becoming". In this track McColm and Shapiro conjure drones to awake the slumbering soul. At the beginning a cluster of warm tones ripple throughout the head. Refracted waves shower the listener with warmth. Definitely the most tranquil of the trio, it's a nice end to a visceral, majestic sonic experience.      

Nagual, like the heavenly bud pictured above, was made for the top shelf - recommended. This stunner follows Ergot's vinyl reissue of Aaron Dilloway's Corpse on Horseback, brimming with decayed, minimal and dank tape loops. Released on black vinyl in an edition of 300, the self-titled album is accompanied by an insert. One may purchase the vinyl directly from Ergot.

peace and love, friends :)