Tim Hecker
Dropped Pianos


4.0
excellent

Review

by Eli EMERITUS
October 10th, 2011 | 45 replies


Release Date: 2011 | Tracklist

Review Summary: A bundle of mere sketches that stand tall next to every other ambient release this year.

About eight months ago, Tim Hecker dropped this year’s finest ambient offering, with all other artist falling just short of its excellence. It was dynamic, ethereal, and featured some of the boldest and moodiest recordings of his career. Ravedeath, 1972 was a marvel; a challenging and exciting creation that even in its most ugly moments still sounded lush and beautiful. Yet the pieces featured on the album were not immaculate burst of spontaneous creativity, but rather, the product of a meticulously planned process. This is evident by Hecker’s ‘rough sketches’"small pieces of music that were the result said process. These ‘demos,’ if you will, have been collected and put onto an EP entitled Dropped Pianos, and are surprisingly different from those found on Ravedeath, 1972.

It appears Hecker was not finished in monopolizing 2011 ambient, as Dropped Pianos is a shockingly solid work that separates itself from its bolder, more refined cousin. As the name implies, Hecker heavily utilizes the piano here. Chords ring hollow against a reverb-less backdrop, making the entire record unexpectedly somber. It’s still decidedly ambient, but many of the tracks feel far less lush as the timbre is scaled way down. As a result, the record is very eerie, cold, and reserved. It’s very beautiful with the piano creating very captivating melodies, but the entire work is steeped in melancholy, rivaling even the most frigid and complex of tracks on Ravedeath, 1972.

Dropped Pianos is indeed a different kind of beast, but it still has that Tim Hecker excellence. The familiar song crafting is there, seeping through each of the record’s nine tracks. The difference of tone in regards to Ravedeath, 1972 is welcome for most aspects, but not so much for others. What this EP lacks is the consistency found not only on Hecker’s most recent album, but those before it as well. It doesn’t have that perfect flow, with the style and production all over the place. However, it’s difficult to fault it too much, as these are merely outlines of bigger, grander pieces.

The ‘sketches’ found on Dropped Pianos are better than many fully developed songs, and like it’s bigger relative, rivals just about every other ambient work this year. Despite being surprisingly different from Tim Hecker’s latest full-length, it is a fascinating and exhilarating piece of ambient music. While it does lack consistency, it’s still a wonderful recording that fans of Ravedeath, 1972, and Hecker in general should pick up immediately.



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user ratings (58)
Chart.
3.7
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
Xenophanes
Emeritus
October 10th 2011


10611 Comments


http://www.xlr8r.com/news/2011/10/listen-tim-heckers-dropped-piano

streaming here

Digging: Kayo Dot - Coffins On Io

Eskate87
October 10th 2011


959 Comments


ohh, thanks for the stream link. been wanting to hear this in its entirety. solid review.

YetAnotherBrick
October 10th 2011


4472 Comments


Woah, I gotta hear this.

sifFlammable
October 10th 2011


2741 Comments


had no idea bwt this at all

thanks man

Xenophanes
Emeritus
October 10th 2011


10611 Comments


np man, this wasn't even in the database : (

I don't think a lot of people know about it, which is sad because it is cool


Slum
October 10th 2011


2579 Comments


i thought this was tim kasher for some reason, i need to get this dude's shit

AngelofDeath
Staff Reviewer
October 10th 2011


16137 Comments


Really enjoying this so far.

Lucid
Contributing Reviewer
October 11th 2011


7026 Comments


This is really good but not quite as harrowing as Ravedeath, 1972. Hecker is an expert at communicating depression through ambient music.

rasputin
October 11th 2011


14550 Comments


yeah I love this (obviously)

Parallels
October 11th 2011


6641 Comments


Why am I the first to Pos, gosh you guys. Super review. Checkin this out.

Gyromania
October 11th 2011


15941 Comments


Hecker is an expert at communicating depression through ambient music.


^ This. Can't wait to hear this.

Also, excellent work as usual, Elijah. However, you need 'it's' to 'its' here: "and like it’s bigger
relative".

Digging: Lantlos - .neon

rasputin
October 11th 2011


14550 Comments


been listening to his discog in chronological order since this morning


chill as fukk

Rev
October 11th 2011


9436 Comments


i found it first on here


swag



xeno for staff bitches WHOOP

Gyromania
October 11th 2011


15941 Comments


been listening to his discog in chronological order since this morning


Radio Amor and Mirages are the only albums I haven't heard yet.

crazyblinddude
October 11th 2011


3389 Comments


sweet man

lobby
October 11th 2011


1251 Comments

Album Rating: 2.5

Appropriate title, just in case you didn't get the theme of Ravedeath lol

Irving
Staff Reviewer
October 11th 2011


7311 Comments


Review is typical Xeno quality; I only wish that there were a couple descriptions of individual songs. Still; pos =)

scissorlocked
October 11th 2011


3511 Comments


Have only checked Harmony in Ultraviolet which was awesome

I'll go for ravendeath and this

good review btw

Digging: Traumprinz - All The Things

Aids
Contributing Reviewer
October 11th 2011


23900 Comments


sweet, gonna stream this later.

also, Lucidity's comment x 100

Digging: RATKING - So It Goes

StreetlightRock
Emeritus
October 11th 2011


3771 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

Ah so good

Digging: Grouper - Ruins



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