Brian McBride: The Effective Disconnect (CD, Kranky, October 2010)

Brian McBride is half of Stars Of The Lid (whose …And Their Refinement Of The Decline was a big hit in these parts), and The Effective Disconnect is the soundtrack to the documentary movie The Vanishing Of The Bees. I suppose that makes this drone music in two senses, and a lot of the tracks are indeed built around long slow string composition which could put me in mind of a distant hive. In the sleeve notes, McBride says ‘I hoped that the pieces would do justice to the “gloriousness of the bees” theme, striving for a more overt hopeful quality. But old traditions die-hard [sic] and the more hopeful side of the music was eventually subsumed by the more lamentable.’ Nevertheless, this does have some up-tempo moments (quite unlike anything I’ve heard from SOTL), especially the lively piano numbers: they aren’t quite The Flight Of The Bumblebee, but their sparkling trills definitely evoke their subjects idiomatic busyness. Elsewhere we get horns, heavily reverberated guitars, and on just one brief occasion the actual buzzing of bees. A very involving exploration of the space between ambient and classical.

I bought this from Boomkat. They call it Home Listening / Modern Classical / Ambient (and for once this makes real sense).

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