The latest release for Soft Recordings offers us the latest release from ambient musician and composer Darren Harper. ‘Movements for an Absent Mind’ features Harper weaving together beautiful compositions, all structured around subtle movements that encompass everything that one would enjoy from ambient music. Harper’s music seems to build up very slowly and carefully, allowing the music itself to really express itself without forcing itself upon the listener. At times, ‘Movements For An Absent Mind’ comes across as an effort structured only for a full-album experience, though there’s still some very enjoyable elements to the album itself.
‘Movements For An Absent Mind’ comes across as a very strong release for Harper. The album itself uses guitars, tape machines and computer software to build up the subtle ambient textures heard in the album. It works very well, showing some brilliant creative talents from Harper himself. The album itself features a wonderful lulling quality, with it being a perfect ambient experience to simply switch on and forget about life for a little while. Nothing on the album feels forced or insisting, allowing one to simply let the music occupy the background, whilst still enjoying the music itself.
There’s many enjoyable elements to Harper’s latest album, which is certainly a strong album to help push off Soft Recordings as an ambient record label. It’s a bit of a shame that the album itself is so tightly packed together, with roughly an hour’s worth of music being spread across just three tracks. There’s little room to select specific moments and enjoy them separately from the album itself. Everything feels like it’s been almost forced into a full-album experience, and only a full-album experience. Despite this, the album itself still comes across as a very strong album experience.
Darren Harper’s ‘Movements for an Absent Mind’ might have a few flaws structurally, but musically the album is beautiful and rather subtle for the most part. Harper allows his own ambient textures to build up slowly, allowing his musical world to slowly evolve into the beautiful music it all becomes. It’s a very strong album, and another great release for Soft Records who certainly seem to be paving their own way as an ambient record label. There’s a lot on offer here, and hopefully we’ll get to see more music of this caliber from this new and upcoming label.
- ★★★★☆ 4/5
- Movement One: Nowhere, Asleep
- Movement Two: Gradient Shift
- Movement Three: By Way of Water
Darren Harper’s latest album ‘Movements for an Absent Mind’ is out now.