By: Gareth Watkin

Benoît Pioulard | website | facebook | bandcamp |

Released on March 30, 2015 via Kranky

American Musician Thomas Meluch offers his latest release via Kranky under the moniker of Benoît Pioulard titled Sonnet. The new album sees Meluch offering a rich and vibrant selection of sonic instrumentals, making great use of various genre techniques to build up the album experience. Meluch expands upon many of his previous techniques, confidently constructing every detail to present his own personal vision. Sonnet seems to occupy a weird and unusual land where everything is washed in hazes of static and noise, with the music being a comforting friend that gently holds your hand as you’re guided through an uncertain yet engrossing world.

Meluch’s latest effort seems to be one of his most ambitious, utilizing his many musical techniques to build up extremely mysterious and exciting soundscapes. There’s an incredibly mystical element running throughout the album, joining together each track into one singular listening experience. Certain elements move through gently, building up calm tones that comfort, whilst others rush through layers of noise to greet the listener. It’s a phenomenal effort, one that borders lands where genres are crossed together until they are no longer discernible. This is arguably Meluch at his absolute best, utilizing his many talents to present a wonderful album experience.

Those familiar with Meluch’s style might note his various takes on different genres, ranging from ambient to lo-fi to even folk. On Sonnet, many of the folk elements we might know of Meluch are mostly abandoned, in favour of lo-fi electronic treatments that form a universal sound across the whole album. It might be a little disappointing to some who might enjoy these now missing elements of Meluch, though the whole album presents so many wonderful elements, it’s hard to notice anything missing as everything feels incredibly complete and whole within its own context.

Meluch’s latest work could perhaps be his best thus far, one that builds upon the many experimental notions previous explored on his earlier releases, whilst pushing out some new and exciting ideas that all fall effortlessly into place. There’s a wonderful notion on Sonnet that Meluch is pushing everything he has forward, whilst simultaneously holding it all back just a little bit, never once revealing the whole picture, but offering us a slightly distorted yet equally enjoyable view of the image being created. It’s noisy, sonic and a little confusing at times, but it’s easily one of the best records Meluch has pushed out thus far.

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