Tuesday 27 March 2018

Dive In The Sky

Koshiro Onchi - Diving (1932)

Coming as no surprise to anyone, I've been digging things of a more downtempo persuasion as of late. But in contrast to the usual lo-fi trip hop / hip hop I usually post when I'm in one of these moods, I've been on a more 'space-y' kick. I'm dipping my toes into some writing beyond the blog and I've been looking for some suitably thematic accompaniment you see, and like so many times before, the Röyksopp boys were there to deliver.

Next, the tune that actually made me settle on the space-y descriptor, the opening from Ben Prunty's sublime soundtrack to indie darling FTL. It plays every time you launch the game, butunlike some other misguided attempts at that idea (looking at you Burnout Paradise), I'm not at all sick of this theme some 6 years later. The opening stabs create this isolated feel that goes hand in hand with the quieter parts of the game, before giving way to a slightly IDM backing beat after some time. The album even comes with a .txt file from Ben himself detailing the process behind the compositions. He says:
"So I tried to merge two ideas. The first is an overt retro aesthetic, with fun melodies, arpeggios and simple synthesizers to evoke that feeling of playing an older game. The second is a calculated, cinematic atmosphere, with high-quality percussion, ambiences and deeper textures. The intention is to suggest that the game's world is bigger than you can see and there's more going on in the universe than just your own adventure."

And finally, some of Wisp's reworking of Selected Ambient Works Vol. 2. I remember stumbling across these years ago when I was a mite more snobbish than I am now, what blasphemy was this, reworking SAW 2? Never mind it was perfect already, how would reworking ambient music even work out?. Well as it turned out, especially in the cases of more melodic tunes like Z Twig, pretty damn well. There's even a little bit of Blue Calx mixed into this rework too which is a nice touch. The end result comes out looking more like a tune from The Flashbulb or Casino Versus Japan which is fine by me, I can appreciate both the moody original and this rework just fine, they suit different contexts after all.

-Claude Van Foxbat

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