Darshan Ambient – Little Things
Melodic rhythmic ambient.
Little Things has a delightfully gentle mood that strays from aching, melancholy beauty to drifting, soaring serenity. The sparse, delicate opening bars of muted piano brim over with emotion – slow and insistent – leaching out into the heart, radiating, diffusing. This patient, loitering introduction builds gradually into swaying motion a subtle, sublime beat and echoing chords drawing the motion onward. There are passages of haunting, glitchy minimalism: the lovely title track featuring a sleet of static, looming electronic waves and dreamy piano. Michael Allison has refined his style now to a high degree of purity – an eclectic sound gatherer, he effortlessly blends together instruments and stylistic elements from diverse places and genres. There are soft flutes, Indian sarangi phrases, trumpet flourishes, weeping steel guitar lines, orchestral strings and dense beatless ambient zones. Country roots sometimes surface in massings of natural passion – the blissful reverie of Watch Your Step demanding complete submission to its heavenly gaze.
Little Things is delivered in a plastic-free card wallet of twin panels; the CD is tucked neatly into an end. Artwork features crepuscular vignettes of quiet, waterside scenery. Red cloud glow silhouettes black foliage; an umber-orange atmosphere soaking everything. Track titles in elegant white font sit alongside their timings on the rear cover – the panorama continued from the front cover here fading and softening into a smoother ground. Inside an image of similar nature fills both panels – sharp centre quickly blurring into obscurity toward the edges. Here are brief credits, a dedication and website details.
Little Things sees the maturing Darshan Ambient sound exploring a little more darkness than normal, looking back somewhat to ambient-country origins and stretching forward into stirring glitchy textures. This is the seventh album from Michael Allison’s uniquely tranquil project to be released via the Spotted Peccary/Lotuspike label. The twelve tracks here have much to attract Darshan Ambient fans of previous releases – the lazy, melodic ambient groove is strongly in evidence – yet the innovative departures and inventive juxtapositions are what lift this album beyond the norm – a fact highlighted by the wise choosing of the title track Little Things. Visit the Darshan Ambient website for more information and reviews or check out the Spotted Peccary page for sound samples and purchase links.