Fire Star

If you've ever listened to Godspeed You! Black Emperor, you realize there's a strong link between classical music and instrumental rock. From a modern perspective, classical music becomes instrumental rock performed by an orchestra — or, in the case of Oakland duo Myrmyr, traditional classical passed through instrumental rock (via amplification, overdubbing, electronics) and into a third realm, a hybrid referencing Eastern European folk and contemporary film scores. Built upon violin and cello, the group's newest release also features harps, bells, remote voices, and modified electronics. The result is a beguiling album, Myrmyr's second, which lacks any useful reference points and roams within an artistic construct of its own making, all without suffering from such off-putting experimentation as often dooms similar efforts at genre-busting.

Fire Star opens with the staccato sound of echoing bells and plucked harp strings. A low cello moan enters the picture, and thus begins "Hot Snow" (part one) — a track that is both more experimental and one-dimensional than its brethren. Part two expands upon the theme with cello and violin, while part three shifts the mood from morose to hopeful with a jaunty backing track of handclaps and other percussion. Another highlight arrives in the final track, the ten-minute "Golden Ashes," wherein the deeply resonant vibrations of a portentous cello run throughout, overlaid by violin, electronics, bells, and ghostly vocals. It's even got a melody. In the end, Fire Star is a deeply pleasurable work for anyone interested in the new and the different. (Under the Spire Recordings)


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment

Anonymous and pseudonymous comments will be removed.

Latest in CD Reviews

Author Archives

Most Popular Stories

Special Reports

The Beer Issue 2020

The Decade in Review

The events and trends that shaped the Teens.

Best of the East Bay


© 2020 Telegraph Media    All Rights Reserved
Powered by Foundation