June 29, 2004

loscil 'first narrows'

Last year, loscil released the excellent Submers, an album that earned comparison to Harold Budd and Brian Eno. The album had a definite oceanic appeal, creating a 'you are under the water and you don't mind' feel that was instantly relaxing and enjoyable. As one would expect, such a musical venture was a one-man show. Didn't matter, though, as Scott Morgan certainly proved that he didn't really need a band to achieve his musical ideas.

First Narrows finds main loscil man Morgan collaborating with an actual backing band, and the results are as good as you'd expect. On the surface, these additions do not change loscil's musical ideas, but the addition of cello, guitar and Rhodes piano do add another dimension to loscil's sound. Heck, if you didn't know that he'd added these musicians, you wouldn't suspect a thing. The depth of songs like "Lucy Dub," "First Narrows" and "Mode" take loscil's music to another level, a level that doesn't exist on Submers or other one-man records.

First Narrows clearly shows that Morgan has not only found a group of people who share his musical range, but that the benefits of collaboration have yet to reach their peak. I'm happy to report that loscil's improving with time, and First Narrows is excellent progress. Like his music, Morgan's not in a hurry to change, and that's a good thing. Besides, his ideas were already excellent, so why change them? When you put it in your stereo, I guarantee you won't be disappointed with First Narrows.

--Joseph Kyle

Label Website: http://www.kranky.net

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