All About Jazz

Home » Articles » CD/LP/Track Review

180

Ashera: Cobalt 144

AAJ Staff By

Sign in to view read count
“Ashera” is an Australian artist whose ambient productions are very much in the “classic” spirit of Brian Eno. You will hear the by-now-familiar sounds of Ambient in Cobalt 144 : rhythm-less floating synthesizer or electric guitar tones, sighing and whispering wordless female voices, tinkling or rattling percussion accents, heavily filtered electric piano notes, bells, and environmental sounds. All the tracks are soft in volume, designed to be a kind of “audible incense” to perfume the environment.

Even though the style of these pieces doesn’t offer a lot of variety or change, and they are (as it were) designed to be ignored, it is worth listening more closely to one or two of the tracks, because Ashera has added some smooth and pleasant tone-colors to his delicate mix. His chord choices are an ultra-diluted tincture of modernist jazz. Track 6, “144,” which is longer than the others at about 13 minutes, is especially pretty. It drifts along on sonic shimmer with a few moments of heavier percussion and gongs, and at some points actually gets loud. Another longer track, number 8, “Ultima Thule,” has a slightly “darker” feel but is also good listening. (Note: I think these are the titles; this album has the most unreadable type I’ve ever encountered on a CD cover.)

Like a lot of the more successful “soft ambient” sounds, these pieces give the feeling of gazing into a reflecting pool of water, which is occasionally stirred by wind, or by fish just below the surface. Ashera’s music certainly does its job of calming the listener down; in fact, it can get downright sleep-inducing. It’s best to listen to this album late at night, or at least at some time when you don’t mind slipping off into dreamland.


Title: Cobalt 144 | Year Released: 2001 | Record Label: Anthony Wright

Tags

comments powered by Disqus

Related Articles

Read You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To CD/LP/Track Review
You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To
by Dan Bilawsky
Published: February 24, 2018
Read We Out Here CD/LP/Track Review
We Out Here
by Chris May
Published: February 24, 2018
Read Best of the Bootlegs 2017 CD/LP/Track Review
Best of the Bootlegs 2017
by Doug Collette
Published: February 24, 2018
Read The Asylum Years CD/LP/Track Review
The Asylum Years
by Doug Collette
Published: February 24, 2018
Read Solo Contra CD/LP/Track Review
Solo Contra
by Daniel Barbiero
Published: February 24, 2018
Read Ellipse CD/LP/Track Review
Ellipse
by Dan McClenaghan
Published: February 23, 2018
Read "Sleight Of Hand" CD/LP/Track Review Sleight Of Hand
by Roger Farbey
Published: May 8, 2017
Read "Minor Step" CD/LP/Track Review Minor Step
by Mike Jurkovic
Published: September 19, 2017
Read "Morph" CD/LP/Track Review Morph
by Tyran Grillo
Published: March 2, 2017
Read "Demons 1" CD/LP/Track Review Demons 1
by Glenn Astarita
Published: November 1, 2017
Read "Unleashed" CD/LP/Track Review Unleashed
by John Sharpe
Published: January 20, 2018
Read "Seifert" CD/LP/Track Review Seifert
by Ian Patterson
Published: August 10, 2017