Monday, April 25, 2011

Son Lux - We Are Rising (2011)

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I wouldn't have heard of Son Lux if not for NPR and an oddly persistent curiosity. Son Lux aka Ryan Lott writes music for modern dance companies when he isn't writing his own tunes. His music a mix of hip hop beats, field recordings, and string and brass arrangements that sounded strangely intriguing despite my normal distaste for such things. Add to the fact that he recorded the whole of his latest album is one month. If that doesn't seem at all impressive to you (which it certainly should), a cursory listen is bound to change your mind. We Are Rising is a multi-layered, richly textured sonic tour de force.

You'd be hard-pressed to find any song that wasn't an absolute labor of love and hard work. Each song strong enough to standalone but also nearly perfect in their place on the album. Whereas some electronic musicians haphazardly throw together all their sounds, Son Lux stitches together a wonderfully cohesive musical tapestry with an elegant use of his arrangements and found sounds.

It's a shame to think that I almost missed out on Son Lux. His album is arguably one of the most aurally enriching experiences I've had in a long time. It's an album that just doesn't quit - there's constantly some sort of forward motion or cluster of sounds to keep you engaged and interested but not excessively so. There's also a certain refinement of ideas that seems odd for someone who wrote a whole album in less than 30 days (Lott was given all of February to white the new album). There's no dizzying array of overcrowded sounds and that works to Lott's advantage in providing a well crafted set of dazzling, yet subdued tracks with real staying power.

Get a taste of Son Lux with title track "We Are Rising" from his latest album We Are Rising, due out this Tuesday.
Son Lux - Rising by Son Lux

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