Andrew Ostler of the modular synth company, Expert Sleepers, released Rolling Like a Bullet on June 15th of this year. It is a beautiful combination of tape loops and modular synthesizer that just ebbs and flows so perfectly along that you are just lost in the experience.
Although this was his first foray into analog tape loops, Andrew has been involved in live-looping performances for quite some time. This project was born out of his desire to "fill the gap" in his experience with looping. He purchased an Akai 4000DS Mk-II reel-to-reel recorder and began chopping up the tape. He chose an unexpected sound source for most of the album, a contrabass clarinet. Although he treated it with some amp simulator and reverb to get some amazing textures out of it. Along with the clarinet, he used some of his own synth modules, especially the ‘Lorelei’ VCO.
The results are two twenty-minute tracks that are spectacular. It is hard to believe that what you are hearing is made with a clarinet and the synth sequences on Whispering are straight out of the Berlin School handbook. Together they create the perfect contrast of floating soundscapes and grooving bass lines.
Quietly, starts slowly with swells of sound and washes of ambient tape loops with the loop point itself creating a subtle rhythm. A beautiful synth sequence fades into the background and starts to build into the right combination of automation and free-flowing sound.
Rolling Like a Bullet is an instant masterpiece and I hope just the beginning of what we can expect to hear from Andrew.
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