abstract ambient composer indie music piano review

Atra Aeterna – “November” Review

Sometimes ad’s on facebook do work! I came across Atra Aeterna by clicking on something that told me it was right up my musical alley and by Jove they were right! “November” is not Atra Aeterna’s most recent piece but it the first I’d like to review because as a whole piece of music its utter beautiful.

Each of the nine tracks on the album are named their numbers in order and each is piano based. A thick, syrupy piano that is heavy in a subtle but thick haze that gives a feel of morning fog or a new dusk. Each track starts off with a simple piano riff that is then build upon with an underscoring of keyboard synths. Those synths stay very ethereal throughout and veer towards mimicking string arrangements. Sometimes they sound like water string arrangements for real, but others are more plucky and rely on ambient decay to swirl around you.

As for the tunes themselves, they are all melodic yet not entirely something you’d call a hook. Instead they become a hypnotic texture palette that swirls and dips colours of echoing piano shrills or soothing keyboard samples. Placed over melodies that are dark, full of minor notes and an underlying tension in the beauty and you have something artistic yet wholesome.

That’s as far as I’ll take you as I don’t want to spoil the rest. It reminds me of a Frou Frou lyric: “beauty in the breakdown”. The piano melodies are downtrodden but wise beyond their years. Dilapidated but with clear grandeur about them. It’s a work of art and has immediately become one of my favourite discoveries of 2011.

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