Field Effect: Audiovariac (2007)
The artists instill a lucid sense of the visual, as many of these works could easily service a cinematic venture. With soothing themes and swarming synth backdrops, contrasts abound throughout. However, Shire-Jones' liquefying and pliant streams of sound work wonders with Gordon's emphasis on the jazz element. At times the program leads through drifting themes, often counterbalanced with layered patterns and forward-moving backbeats supplied by drummer Darren Edwards. And the musicians' conjure up a world music slant amid harrowing and digitally treated wordless chants. In spots, the electronic element suggests a mechanical pulse that conjures up notions of experiencing a large-scale manufacturing plant. Imagery abounds everywhere.
On "Dissimilar, the duo generates an electric-organic, jazz-shaded Indo-fusion character via windswept choruses, frothy percussion and a subliminal sense of antiquity. The duo even incorporates some psychedelic-drenched, East Indian effects to round a wonderful audible treat for the ears and mind.
Shire-Jones doesn't incorporate electronics as a means to an end. Contrarily, he picks his spots wisely while complementing his shrewd arranging and melody-making faculties. It's all about the music, and not the implements used to create it. That unto itself speaks volumes these days.
Track Listing: Awakening; Sonic Zeitgeber; Difference Engine; Grandfather Paradox; Freefall; Dissimilar; Audiovariac8; Mortal Coil; Contact; Ethereal Blue.
Personnel: Matt Shire-Jones: electronics, processing; Tony Gordon: saxes. Additional musicians: Darren Edwards: drums; Ped greatley: guitar; Toby Liddle: acoustic 12-string guitar; Rob Parkinson: hammered dulcimer; Pete Swinerton: synthesized stringed arrangement.
Record Label: Self Produced