The project started at the end of 2014 and claims to be inspired by Sunn O))), Tim Hecker, Tangerine Dream, Bass Communion, Machinefabriek, Clint Mansell and Earth, among others. Those are some great names to be influenced by, but they also raise the bar. Each of them is an absolute master in their trade, loved by many and poorly copied by several. Now this review gets tensive, because the question is ready to be asked:
Is Chelidon Frame a poor copy of those big names?
The answer is a resounding 'no'. For starters, this is not a copy and it certainly doesn't sound poorly. Instead, this is an interesting and deeply personal experiment with drones, soundscapes, minimal percussion and samples. These aren't simple, one-sided drones either. Some of these tracks are songs, stories even. Opener 'Sunless Dry Geranium' for example is a great track, gloomy, melodic and immersive.
'Phase 0 - Explorer' seems to nudge towards the minimalistic side of things but gradually gains melody and a mysterious atmosphere. Maybe it's the yin to the opener's yang, or something like that, but I certainly like the combination of these two tracks. 'A Monogram' seems to follow the path of its predecessor, and I'm becoming very curious about where that path eventually leads to, which is a good thing, obviously.
What this music is perfect for, is for playing in headphones during a forty-six minutes walk through a city. It can be any city and any area of it. Take in the environment, the scenery, the desolation of the back alleys and the hussle and bussle of the busy streets. Smell the air of bakery and the chocolatery but also smell the scent of diesel and sweaty men with small dogs. Combine all of those observations with the music on 'Imago'. You'll love it.
You will see the city in a whole different way, with an artificial but fitting soundtrack. Every Time you listen to beautiful tunes like 'Phase 1 - Peak XV', 'Mikveh' or 'On This Horrible Machine' you will find new things, visually and musically. It's this kind of adventurous and narrative music I love so much, so it shouldn't be a surprise when I recommend this album to all you ambienteers out there.