Bibio
Phantom Brickworks


4.0
excellent

Review

by Eucatastrophe CONTRIBUTOR (75 Reviews)
November 4th, 2017 | 53 replies


Release Date: 2017 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Echoes and voices can sometimes be heard, in some way or another...

An album's context has always been inconsequential towards my enjoyment of it. As long as the music itself was up to snuff I could just as easily listen to songs about the death of someone’s cherished loved one as I could about the artist stomping on puppies. For me, it’s always been about the visceral experience of listening to the music. I’ve never “related” to any artist’s message or ideas because simply, I’m a different person, with different views on the world and different ways of interacting and handling its perpetual surprises and my own tribulations. Any similarities between my experiences and those of anyone else were just that, similarities. Good and bad. People die, hearts break, ambition is realized, and love is found all over the world every day. I see it everywhere though, everything from people bragging about how much they cried during a song *eyeroll* to people’s lives being legitimately changed because of an album or a movie they experienced and the sometimes the thought bubbles up…

Why can’t I connect to music like others do"

It’s never a bothersome thought as much as one born of sheer morbid curiosity, but for the length of Bibio’s Phantom Brickworks and forevermore, I have an inkling of an idea. Phantom Brickworks premise isn’t especially deep, it’s actually pretty simple, if anything a simple turn of phrase to fit Bibio’s explanation:

I don’t believe in ghosts but I do believe places can be haunted by meaning. Places change, not always for the better and not always by natural, benevolent or politically sound means. A place can be charged with atmosphere because of what it has been through or what it has been.

This notion of places being “haunted by meaning”, as esoteric and conceptual as it seems, is somehow perfectly actualized in Phantom Brickworks. Much like Silver Wilkinson in the way it channeled a late delirious summer, Phantom Brickworks plays with themes of nostalgia to set its mood. A subdued fuzz swims under many tracks, anchoring the listener in a past of their own fabrication brought about by Bibio’s soundscapes. The beauty of nature is explored extensively throughout the album, in particular “Phantom Brickworks III” which paints a vivid picture of greenery and life through its hushed pianos and uplifting tone. In contrast, “9:13” and “Capel Celyn” convey much more somber moods, utilizing woodwinds to great effect in reflecting a sort of inevitable change in places brought about by man. The music never swells and builds to any kind of climax, opting instead to simply flow much like the passage of time. The inclusions of some buzzing woodwinds or chirpy piano passages throughout injects both a profound sense of passing time and a magical quality that really entraps and forces imagination from the listener. Phantom Brickworks relies on its tracks’ slow progression to create self-contained worlds for the listener to project their experiences into. Its atmosphere is omnipresent, what conjures images of a small forest from one person’s childhood will conjure a deserted wooden bridge covered in vines for another person. After last year’s electro acoustic funky A Mineral Love, Phantom Brickworks is one hell of an about face for Bibio, but the man has mastered the sounds of nostalgia. And I sit here, intermittently looking out the window of my house at my tree I’ve watched die for a third straight autumn and for the first time I get it. I’ve connected.



Recent reviews by this author
The Ongoing Concept PlacesStray From the Path Only Death Is Real
Igorrr Savage SinusoidBuddy and Kaytranada Ocean & Montana
He Is Legend fewStolas Stolas

user ratings (26)
Chart.
3.7
great

Comments:Add a Comment 
Calc
Contributing Reviewer
November 3rd 2017


15789 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

realized I haven't written a legit me me me me flower bunny foo foo type of review yet and I feel gross. This might be my AOTY though, knowing what Bibio was going for with this he couldn't have nailed it any better. Let me know where I messed up I'm sure there's more than a couple of them.





https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xyp14lXevig

Frivolous
November 3rd 2017


352 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

great review man, your writing is excellent



this was an amazing album, prob gonna be in my top 10 if not my top 5

Digging: James Holden and The Animal Spirits - The Animal Spirits

Calc
Contributing Reviewer
November 4th 2017


15789 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

well thanks man, this def resonated with me.

zakalwe
November 4th 2017


23372 Comments


Contextuality? Is that even a word or is it a classic yankism? As we all know they love to discombobulatise the vocabulary by augmentatlity.

Calc
Contributing Reviewer
November 4th 2017


15789 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

classic yankism. I'll guv' it out more for ya.

zakalwe
November 4th 2017


23372 Comments


Good lad. This album is lovely.

Lucid
November 4th 2017


8682 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

what a stunning ambient album, he pulls the style off effortlessly

klap
Staff Reviewer
November 4th 2017


11756 Comments

Album Rating: 3.0

thanks 4 reviewing this calc

Asdfp277
November 4th 2017


15799 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

this is lovely

Calc
Contributing Reviewer
November 4th 2017


15789 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

twas your review of silver wilkinson that got me into this dude in the first place klap. I swear the more it rains around here the more this album seems appropriate.

Atari
Staff Reviewer
November 4th 2017


22699 Comments


good shit man (the review I mean, though I'm sure the album is wonderful too)

Digging: Langhorne Slim - Lost At Last, Vol 1

Gyromania
November 4th 2017


23437 Comments


another contender for best album art of the year

Calc
Contributing Reviewer
November 4th 2017


15789 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

the contest is over gyro. and thanks atari thanks much

Frivolous
November 5th 2017


352 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

ey feature

Sniff
November 5th 2017


3951 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

Can't wait to jam this

JohnnyOnTheSpot
Staff Reviewer
November 5th 2017


6364 Comments


"I haven't written a legit me me me me flower bunny foo foo type of review yet"
it kinda shows. not it a remotely bad way tho imo. it definitely reads like a sort of awakening, when you realize music can indeed have this effect and conjure these borderline-embarassing words of vulnerability. (not that this is the first time an album has affected you on a similar level - how would i know - but this sorta tone is a detour for you)

was nice tho, warmed my heart almost as much as the rare occasion when zakalwe says something nice, or klap reminds us he's still alive

Calc
Contributing Reviewer
November 5th 2017


15789 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

that's what I was going for, I'm glad it didn't come off as too much.

Sniff
November 5th 2017


3951 Comments

Album Rating: 3.5

This is very Leyland Kirby-esque

Tyll
November 5th 2017


3 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

This album is just fantastic!



Great review!

zakalwe
November 5th 2017


23372 Comments


This is an Album that makes me want to be somewhere where I’m completely alone looking at an ocean or a mountain or a magnificent tree or a beautiful sunset and feel the enormity of life and the universe.

The reality is I’ve spun it on me way to the chippy.



You have to be logged in to post a comment. Login | Create a Profile





STAFF & CONTRIBUTORS // SITE FORUM // CONTACT US

Bands: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


Site Copyright 2005-2017 Sputnikmusic.com
All Album Reviews Displayed With Permission of Authors | Terms of Use | Privacy Policy