How we rate: our writers tend to review music they like within their preferred genres.
Norwegian drummer Erland Dahlen's solo debut proffers several areas of interest, as he uses a 1940s Rollingbomber Slingerland drum kit (presumably using new heads) and overlays an array of small percussion and string instruments, electronics and other implements to craft a striking electro-organic expedition. However, the program intimates an inside view of a drummer exploiting his toys to remodel paths previously taken.
"Monkey" tenders an all-inclusive display of Dahlen's methodology. He gets matters off to a rapid pace via snappy temple block hits and layered percussion grooves, communicating an audio experience that could serve as the opening for a cinematic action thriller. Moving forward, it may be akin to a puzzlea challenge to guess what Dahlen is playing throughout these tightly arranged patterns. Otherwise, he uses his toms for over-the-top accents, incorporating sprawling electronic drones to lay out a broad horizon and harrowing soundscape, contrasting the driving rhythmic impetus. Dahlen even uses his drumsticks to mimic a traditional slide guitar motif to round out the composition, spiced with streaming treatments and a rapid-deployment game plan.
Dahlen unites an ethereal yet vibrant setting with unconventional designs. He paints a flourishing picture, embellished by an abundance of enchanting frameworks and opaque vistas that, for the most part, defy categorization.
Personnel: Erland Dahlen: Slingerland Rollingbomber drums from the mid-40s, musical saw, timpani, gongs, bow on cakeform with springs, tank drums, cuica, maracas, kalimba, temple blocks, steeldrum, logdrum, bells, electronics, megaphone and sticks/mallets on string instruments (monkey drummer with battery).