AVANT MUSIC : Banabila & Machinefabriek

This self-titled self-release has an immediacy that reflects its creation in a very short time, with a flurry of file-swapping in October of last year. Its a shame they havent given it a title, because the nine-track, forty-minute suite, from the wheezy harmonium of Ascend to the elegant denouement of Descend, definitely tells a story of some kind, with a pleasing narrative curve and some dramatic hairpin turns. Slow Wave I is foamy with plucked guitar and computer glitches that lap lazily at a pebbled beach. Dead Air is long, drawn out and troubling and Frost captures a blizzard inside a snow globe. Slow Wave II initiates a second half which makes you woozy with gongs, singing bowls and singing birds briefly discernable through an ambient fog that, hit by a sudden chill turns into spiky, sparky precipitation. Somehow, we end up dry and cozy inside an electronic church at the end.

Stephen Fruitman.