Strom Noir "Dni Stratili Svoju Farbu" CD + 3" CDr
It's a really big honor for me to review this album, because Strom Noir is coming from the same country as I come from. Yes, drone ambient genre is still quite small in Slovakia and the work of Emil Maťko aka Strom Noir is most likely more recognized across the borders. Anyway, "Dni Stratili Svoju Farbu" (from Slovak translated as "Days Lost Their Colors") is the second release of Strom Noir on sympathetic and ambitious UK label Hibernate, but first as pressed CD, so finally the dreams came true!!!
Album unfolds strongly with glitchy/experimental guitar ambience "Tebe" ("To You"), almost 9 minutes long texturally rich and highly evocative composition. The title track "Dni Stratili Svoju Farbu" is loaded with melancholic and ethereal guitar washes with little sonic experiments thrown in. Absolutely beautiful and evocative sound painting! Melancholic feel is carried through the next piece "Príliš Ďaleko Do Polnoci" ("Too Long To The Midnight"), but slightly more droning and earthy. Minimal drones on "All Tomorows Dreams" shortly evolve into more active, but deeper, immense, carefully crafted and sculpted soundscapes of sublime textures. Nearly 11 minutes of great visualizing music and possibly the best track of Strom Noir I have ever heard!!! With "There's No Such Thing As Death" Strom Noir returns again to melancholic mood, while the second half features organic elements. Gloomy and ethereal strings on "Where Did All The Love Go?" are enriched by some glitches. The next composition with German title "Das Was Man Sich Vorstellt, Braucht Man Nie Zu Verlieren" belongs to dreamy and meditative pieces. "Na Pravé Poludnie" ("At The Right Noon") is the most organic composition on the album, but still complexly fitting with fragile strings the overall ethereal and melancholic feel of the album, very nice closer I must say! Bonus 3" CDr starts with more experimental and dramatic piece "Black Box". Drones on "Jej" ("Her") are nicely enriched by various field recordings (mainly bird calls) while the closing piece, "Nedeľný Blues" ("Sundays' Blues"), is slow-motion droning piece.
Since 3" CDr bonus comes in small run of 50 copies only, I am sure it will become soon a rare collector's item. The album, mastered by Rudi Arapahoe, comes in elegant digipak packaging with eye-catching front cover picture (by Jonathan Lees) exactly displaying the title of the album. All in all, "Dni Stratili Svoju Farbu" is for sure the most matured, precisely crafted and colorful work of talented Strom Noir up to date and it's highly recommended to all fans of guitar based drone ambient. Perfektný album, Emil!!!
Richard Gürtler (May 29, 2011, Bratislava, Slovakia)
Explore "Dni Stratili Svoju Farbu" here...
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