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Dark Folke (2009), 6.5/10 , /10

The Observatory is a combo from Singapore with keyboards, guitars, bass and drums (including guitarist Victor Low, singer and guitarist Leslie Low, keyboardist Evan Tan, keyboardist Vivian Wang and drummer Ray Aziz) who released Time of Rebirth (2004), Blank Walls (2005) and A Far Cry From Here (2007), that crowned their vision of bridging digital-age post-rock and Canterbury-school prog-rock via a painstakingly careful balance of live instruments and digital effects (or, better, digital layers).

Dark Folke (Observatory, 2009). The delicate and introverted Omicron and Mind Roots, that frame the album, seem to deconstruct film themes from the 1960s. These mostly instrumental pieces are still anchored to the prog/post aesthetic, but elaborate lullabies like Ephemeron instead explore a folkish territory, and Incastrate sits somewhere between Robert Wyatt and Nico. It all happens on tiptoes and in whispers. There is no bombast, no craziness, no violence; no blatant dissonance as well as no catchy riffs. Invisible Room is a spaced-out hymn a` la hippie David Crosby The one exception, and probably the album's standout, is Lowdown, that initially blends elements of Indian raga and Gregorian chant but then turns into a psychedelic freak-out for the digital age.

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(Copyright © 2010 Piero Scaruffi | Legal restrictions - Termini d'uso )
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