Panabrite
Disintegrating Landscape


3.8
excellent

Review

by Hyperion1001 EMERITUS
February 2nd, 2015 | 31 replies


Release Date: 01/18/2015 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Meditative ambient exotica

Seattle-based ambient musician Norm Chambers has been releasing a constant stream of meditative analog synthesizer music as Panabrite for the better part of 5 years, amassing a prolific catalog of droning, ambient exotica of generally consistent quality for most of his career. With his music usually finding homes on smaller DIY labels with a large focus on the analog media nostalgia that has gained such massive popularity recently, Chamber’s aesthetic is one of respectful authenticity, looking backwards to the kinds of progressive electronic and ambient synthesizer music characteristic of the late 70’s and 80’s while adding enough fresh ideas so as to update the style rather than function simply as a nostalgic retrospective. After releasing several collections of music in 2014, Chambers has begun the new year by releasing what might be his most ambitious work yet, a single, nearly 50 minute track of sprawling synth textures, contorted samples, and droning ambiance that ends up being the most cohesive collection of ideas he has yet released under the moniker.

With an aesthetic usually dominated by washed out photographs of brutalist architecture of a pronounced Pacific Northwest flavor and image collages that reference many of the progenitors of the kind of synthetic, exotic ambient Chambers creates, Disintegrating Landscape falls right in line with the kinds of music he has been releasing under this moniker since its inception. While the music of Panabrite has never been harsh or unpleasant to the ear, the massive palette of sounds Chamber’s is able to coax out of his array of analog electronic instruments usually makes for collections of songs that tend to be soothing and meditative while never being harmless to the point of disinterest. Disintegrating Landscape sees Chambers force his music away from his normal practice of synthesizing unique textures and building structures around them into something much more compositionally focused, using textures and soundscapes to build momentum and tension rather than simply function as set pieces for ambient landscapes.

Disintegrating Landscape is a sprawling aural world punctuated by carefully repurposed samples of environmental and incidental noises situated within an undulating wash of arpeggiated synth patterns and crescendos of warm pads. Comprised of several movements that all revolve around a central idea that permeates the entire composition, the single track contained on this recording sees Chambers penchant for creative sound design thrive within the context of a single motif spread out over nearly 50 minutes. It affords each of the textures room to breathe and space to be drawn out to their logical conclusion instead of fighting for dominance in a single, much less lengthy song. This makes for Chamber’s most sparse recording to date; but it is precisely this use of negative space that allows Disintegrating Landscape to work so well as a piece of ambient music. Indicative of exactly the kind of aural landscape included at the artwork to this release, this single, monolithic track proves to be one of the most fully realized pieces Chambers has managed to create under the Panabrite moniker.

While Disintegrating Landscape doesn’t stray too far from the general aesthetic Chambers has been fleshing out for the length of his career, it is nonetheless the most engaging and thematically cohesive of his works, capitalizing on the strength of his sound design and the analog textures he is so experienced in creating and giving them room to develop over a much longer period of time. While certainly not a groundbreaking release, in general terms as well as relative to his own previous output, Disintegrating Landscape functions as the most fully realized of Chamber’s ambient projects and one of the most successfully orchestrated releases within its own niche of music. For fans of transportative, meditative synthesizer music, Panabrite’s inaugural release of 2015 delivers on just about all fronts, and should be a welcome addition to any collection.




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user ratings (11)
Chart.
3.1
good


Comments:Add a Comment 
Hyperion1001
Emeritus
February 1st 2015


19975 Comments

Album Rating: 3.8

took a bit of a break cause life stuff happened but i didnt forget you guys i promise

Let
February 1st 2015


1598 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

I only skipped around on Bandcamp for a bit but it sounds really interesting and chill. I'll give it a shot in full later, and great review mang

ExplosiveOranges
Contributing Reviewer
February 1st 2015


4408 Comments


Oh Hyp, how I've missed you......

Review is pretty solid from a quick skim. Would I dig this?

ComeToDaddy
February 1st 2015


1613 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

Your ambient reviews are always so well-written. Sounds like a good listen, will give it a spin

Hyperion1001
Emeritus
February 1st 2015


19975 Comments

Album Rating: 3.8

thanks guys : )



and im not sure if you're into droning ambient music that leans more towards the electronic spectrum then yeah you should dig it. just give the bandcamp a listen its streaming in full.

WashboardSuds
February 1st 2015


5101 Comments


great review, Soft Terminal was amazing

Ryus
February 1st 2015


15701 Comments


yay hype!

cool review man and this sounds like something i'd dig, will check it out :]

Digging: DJ Richard - Path of Ruin

Keyblade
February 2nd 2015


25181 Comments


Panabrite review? Knew it was Hype, good to see you back man.

Man, I'm so behind...gonna check this out eventually

Digging: Summoning - With Doom We Come

TMobotron
February 2nd 2015


7236 Comments


This sounds wonderful man, checking it out now.

iamamanfromspace
February 2nd 2015


1030 Comments


aahhh this sounds like it'd be my sh:^)t

Phlegm
February 2nd 2015


7241 Comments


lovely! thanks for the heads up H

Phlegm
February 2nd 2015


7241 Comments


actually found this a little too busy for my anxious ears - interesting listen none the less though ~

Hyperion1001
Emeritus
February 2nd 2015


19975 Comments

Album Rating: 3.8

thanks guys hope you dig it!



and yeah i can understand that criticism but his music has always been more or less "busy" and focused on the sounds and textures. glad you gave it a shot though.

Ryus
February 2nd 2015


15701 Comments


agreed with phlegm, i was expecting this to be more tranquil and soothing

but its still enjoyable nonetheless

zaruyache
February 2nd 2015


18093 Comments


sounds cool gonna check.

Hopelust
February 2nd 2015


2761 Comments


nice nice very nice. Great review.

AlexTM510
February 2nd 2015


1450 Comments


saw the summary and immediately listened, this is really mind twisting and challenging but I am engaged.

LordePots
February 2nd 2015


38569 Comments


" Meditative ambient exotica"

so new age bullshit?

Digging: Blondes - Warmth

oltnabrick
February 2nd 2015


35835 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

nah b, this good as shit

Hyperion1001
Emeritus
February 2nd 2015


19975 Comments

Album Rating: 3.8

yep but I like it : )



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