Comparing making music to painting is a rather romantic idea: just like a painter might choose certain colors to evoke emotions, the musician will add in certain chords, notes or certain instruments to try to evoke a precise mood from the listener. On their first collaboration Gargle & Bosques de mi Mente approached their work like a painter and by adding colours, texture and space they came up with a meditative, patient and considerate orchestration over a solo piano composition that is absolutely wonderful.
What happens then when ambient post-rock with modern classical influences meets a classic composer? Well, this collaboration between the Japanese duo Gargle and the Spanish Bosques de mi Mente delivers Absence, an album of a stunning beauty.
When Gargle asked Bosques de mi Mente to work on a song for the new Gargle’s album they worked so well together that they decided not to keep their collaboration to a single song. And so it happened that today we have the pleasure to listen to Absence, which is a melancholic music journey of nine tracks and just over 50 minutes from which you can feel the rich magnetism between the composers. I cannot say which is the right moment to listen to this kind of music. I tend to associate it with rainy day mood where each rain drop is full of melancholy and so damn intense. And the notes from Absence surround you like the most romantic rain. Put your face towards the sky and then enjoy this music.
The album starts with the strong and alive sound of bells that celebrates the new collaboration and the incredible music that immediately follows them. The first piano notes, folks, they kill me. The music is so intense that you feel it being a part of you. The effect hits you fully during the last minute of the composition as the music sways from side to side, like some beautiful forgotten waltz written for everyone’s personal romantic moments. 'Snow Storm' is another intense moment on Absence; this track is dynamic and joyful. It's a dreaming track where the whole sound is built around the two hands of the pianist. This is an outstanding track!
The following '(The Triumph of the) Flight of the last Bird on Earth' has the same mood as the opening song. The colours are again dark to evoke the feelings of nostalgia and, of course, absence. The sound of a classical violin is so perfect that it arrives directly into your heart and the sound built around it never covers it but, instead it has the power to amplify the feelings. Magic arrives towards the end when the songs become more dramatic remembering the best of MONO's sound. I cannot avoid to comment on the following track 'A Sudden Lapse of Joy' as this is making my afternoon. This work of art starts with an amazing piano and soon a guitar melody arrives. Together they create a world of contemplative, post classical elegance. The guitar melody that accompanies the piano after 60 seconds accentuates before a French accordion returns the fold and the piano moves to tinkering.
'The Moment Our Glances Met' is the perfect soundtrack to the dancer of the famous Jack Vettriano painting. Nostalgia is back again with 'Echoes of Our Memories' where the field recording and the noises of children in the background bring us back to our childhood and the places we bring to our heart. The piano notes then intensify this sensation and when the guitar arrives as well there is no way to escape from this feeling. This is really a great song. 'We Are Running Out Of Time' follows the same path but this time its intensity doesn't have the colour of nostalgia but instead it is full of melancholy.
'When Light and Motion Collide' closes the unforgettable experience of Absence. This song has all the direct beauty one could want. The alternation between light and dark moments is captivating and looking at the painter choosing different colours from his palette the only thing you can do is to remain silent in front of all this beauty. The distorted guitar swells and the echoing gongs built on the piano notes is incredibly beautiful and represent one of the highest moment of Absence. With such compositions Gargle & Bosques de mi Mente embrace the solitary approach with gentle passion.
Absence is out now through Fluttery Records.