Stars of the Lid
Avec Laudenum


2.5
average

Review

by Zebra USER (177 Reviews)
October 8th, 2007 | 29 replies


Release Date: 1999 | Tracklist

Review Summary: I need to sleep

Hailing from Austin, Texas Stars of the Lid are an ambient/drone based duo. Although the twosome has received a decent amount of acclaim with their monstrous 2001 double-disc release The Tired Sounds of Stars of the Lid, Avec Laudenum is their most accessible and shortest effort to date. Often compared to ambient pioneers such as Brian Eno and Edgar Froese Stars of the Lid posses many similar qualities. Utilizing lush synthesizer tones and organic, spacey guitars Brian McBride and Adam Wilitze are able to create a dense, atmospheric sound while using minimal effects and instruments.

Upon first listen it may seem easy to pawn Stars of the Lid off as Brian Eno impersonators, Avec Laudenum is an album that demands both patience and time. The first three tracks on the album all belong to the “Atomium” series which clocks in just over twenty minutes long. Mostly composed of soothing, orchestrated electronic effects and dark, shadowed guitar drones Stars of the Lid are able to create a mesmerizing atmosphere that has the ability to enthrall the listener. Ethereal keyboard tones fade in and out as dreary guitars drone in the background. The only big downside to the duo’ s sound is that there isn’t much progression, it’s just the same set of tones fading in and out. For those that aren’t interested in ambient music Avec Laudenum seems like an extremely boring listen; that being said Stars of the Lid succeed as they are able too create solid background music that is at the same time gripping and accessible.

The next two tracks on the album are Dust Breeding (1.316+) and I Will Surround You, and they close out the album with the same sort of effect. Like the whole “Atomium” sections these two pieces stick with the same formula; dense synth tones matched up with dark yet relaxing guitar drones. While every song contains a “sleep-like” quality towards the end of the album it seems like the duo was getting kind of lazy. Even though this is an ambient album intended for relaxation the last two tracks don’t match up with the engrossing, tranquil sounds of the first three.

Although Avec Laudenum isn’t as varied as The Tired Sounds of Stars of the Lid it comes off as a pleasant yet sometimes tedious album. The beauty of Avec Laudenum is very subtle; the biggest issue is that the album demands a lot of time without giving that much back to the listener. That being said Stars of the Lid thrive when it comes to creating music for those that seek sleep. In the end Avec Laudenum isn’t the most unique or diverse ambient album but it sure as hell is relaxing.



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user ratings (150)
Chart.
4
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
LifeInABox
October 8th 2007


3709 Comments


Good. Short and easy to read. Very short :thumb:

Doppelganger
October 8th 2007


3124 Comments


Good review. I have And Their Refinement Of The Decline and it's incredible.

IsItLuck?
Emeritus
October 8th 2007


4947 Comments


"I need too sleep" errr typo?

pulseczar
October 8th 2007


2385 Comments


Zebra's greatest weakness has always been his "to" misuse

pulseczar
October 9th 2007


2385 Comments


my mom is more of a jethro tull fan otherwise the story seems plausible enough

McP3000
October 9th 2007


4049 Comments


I wish i was was one third vomit

Kaleid
October 10th 2007


741 Comments


I like ambient electronica only if it's varied/interesting in parts. This sounds like it'd bore the liver out of me.

Good review, as always; very hard to review ambient albums

Doppelganger
October 10th 2007


3124 Comments


Kaleid, get And Their Refinement Of The Decline. It's absolutely beautiful.

IsItLuck?
Emeritus
October 10th 2007


4947 Comments


^^^^^^^^^^^^^^123456789^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^

Kaleid
October 11th 2007


741 Comments


*reads reviews*

OK, so I'll do, thanks. Seems like it's brilliant

Shadowed Reflection
July 1st 2010


275 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

I have never read a review from you that I agreed with.





How can you give this any less than a 4? there's emotion pouring out of this album and clearly there was so much effort put into it and then you go and take a dump on it as if you can make better music?



un fucking believable.





seriously reviewing an ambient album and then complaining about how boring it is? that's like reviewing a rolling stones album and complaining about the guitars. jesus christ

Psilocyanide
July 4th 2010


1823 Comments


There's plenty of ambient that isn't boring, if he finds it boring and doesn't like that then that's his opinion.

SlightlyEpic
July 4th 2010


5810 Comments


charles' review of this is still my favourite review on this site

exitsense
November 8th 2010


403 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

His review is gone now! What a shame.

Cerbyrus
November 11th 2010


569 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Where's cha rles review? =[

luci
December 22nd 2010


10572 Comments


The Atomium is my favorite three part track by Stars of the Lid.

struth
October 20th 2011


435 Comments


This review offends me.

kitsch
March 24th 2013


5117 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

this is one of their best releases. top 2 maybe top 3 for sure



aquatic life is #1 i think

kitsch
April 19th 2013


5117 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

After relistening to this band the last few weeks after years of ignoring them, this is the album i keep coming back to over and over

CosmicPie
June 20th 2013


1306 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Album is beautiful. The reviewer definitely sucks for not agreeing with me.



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