Bryan Noll's music is foggy and ambiguous, like the moment you wake up from a dream or when the sky starts to turn orange at the end of the day. His new EP "concrescence EP 01" materializes like a cloud or a blurry image ("zebegin"), takes shape as a live, glitchy rock band ("the tools are there"), lays down some beats ("forester process a") and then evaporates back into nothingness ("coda").
At home as both a studied guitar player and a sample-chopping laptop musician, Noll ties everything together by shuffling around its context. Electric guitars become ambient washes of Fennesz-like reverb on the more ethereal tracks, and when "the tools are there" reaches its rock-out climax, it propels itself forward with loops of plucked strings and cellos that rise higher and higher until they sound like they're going to snap.
Like Boards of Canada and the Books, Bryan Noll makes electronic music that would sound more appropriate in a forest than in a bedroom. He twists analog and digital sounds until their distinction becomes irrelevant, and then he pours sunlight over the whole thing to make even the weirdest moments feel vaguely hopeful. That current of energy runs through all four songs here, making them best suited for the morning, when you're still half-asleep and you need to feel like there's something worth waking up for.
-Jonathan Graves (plasticexplosives.net)