With a mostly ambient and chillout onset, Laments of a Chess Automaton is a very uniform work, where elemental melodic nuances contrast with more discreet rhythms, almost energized below the surface of delicate silent harmonies, a lot of them with charming and refined appeal. Some intertwined and very useful minimalist traits also speckle within the uttermost fallen layers of the rhythms, discreetly expanding an ever increasing set of lucid, but almost silent atmospheres into the tracks.
Nevertheless, the greatest qualities of the album also manages to be its biggest contingencies: while the tracks, being long, aloud a very experimental expansion of the atmospheric melodic devices that allows the harmonies to grow within the space of its own characteristic sonorous ambitions, resulting in some very fine melodies in the process, the album does fall into – and inevitably can’t avoid – a very tedious feeling, that will eventually present itself as a boring sound to the listener.
Although it is a very good electronic album, unfortunately, the record does resent itself from an evident and conformed tone of monotony, and being a little too long, it has the potential to exasperate the least patient listener of any kind. In a situation like this one, you have to pay more attention to the qualities of the album than its flaws. Laments of a Chess Automaton, particularly, does have very intriguing and smooth soft harmonies, peculiar in the way they minimally touch the spherical notes of the sonorous interface of its own rhythms, while freezing layers of delicate contrasts seems to evolve from the horizon of its own nucleus. So many discreet, but powerful elements, inevitably allows the sensibility of great musical moments, that really does have its rewards. So, although Laments of a Chess Automaton is not exactly a masterpiece, it is a very good work. Competent on technical devices, well done, beautifully executed, it does deserve a personal evaluation on the behalf of the enthusiasts of the genre. But do not expect too much of it. It is that kind of album that you have to listen almost without any expectation.