Lapalux
Amnioverse



Release Date: 11/08/2019 | Tracklist

Review Summary: Karma FM

As the dust settled on 2017's Ruinism, the two lead singles for Stuart Howard's follow-up Amnioverse came as a bit of a surprise. Rather than continuing themes of deconstruction and reconstruction - Kintsugi on loops and melodies to create haunting ethereal soundscapes that wilted and rotted as much as they rooted and blossomed - Howard offered up a pair of relatively linear takes that swiftly lulled me into a false sense of security. I felt a tad conflicted at first, Ruinism had quickly become my absolute standard for experimentalism in modern electronic, but there was also a sense of relief in the prospect of being offered a reprieve from such an exhausting scope. I felt that 'Earth' and 'Limb To Limb' might indicate a cathartic side-step from Ruinism rather than a continuation, an exploration on a set of influences not as prevalent in Howard's past material. As welcome as that notion may have been, this pretence allowed me to dissolve my guard, however, these rather unrevealing singles turned out to be a veneer for something much bigger, bolder, and more ambitious than ever before.

I've always admired the artistry of contrasting beauty and decay such that the distinction obscures. I've found it notable in films like 'Annihilation', 'Valhalla Rising', or 'Suspiria' (2018), where visceral, unnerving content is shot in such a profound, stunning manner that violence and grace begin to coalesce and become indistinguishable. It's revealing of the necessity for polarities such as these to exist in order to fully realize their respective affects. Dichotomies like these, where each opposing factor is inalienably subject to corruption by its opposite, grant a breadth of emotion that tears a hole in the chest and leaves you feeling truly naked and vulnerable. Ruinism explored the states of beauty and decay in a similarly affecting way. Stuart reassembled the fragments of loops, samples, and instruments to build new pictures that freed the work from certain linear suppositions. It was like watching a time-lapse of birth and death in reverse. Amnioverse continues similar themes; the art representative of the womb (inspired by James Turrell’s Twilight Epiphany Skyspace installation), the album explores the intermediate state and the endless cycle of birth, life, death, and rebirth.

Much of the album plays out in a similar way to Ruinism; tension is constantly being built in fractured episodes, sometimes abruptly transitioning mid-song, sometimes delaying the gratification to frustrating lengths just to implode. Often times exploding into such tremendous climaxes it feels as if you are being forcefully submerged in the sonic undercurrent. The difference is the scale; while Ruinism felt introverted and personal, Amnioverse is cosmic and expansive. Breaks filter in and out of fluid synths, pushing at the boundaries of space and dilating time. The masterful attentiveness to atmosphere results in a drift through four dimensional space, surfing the radio for intergalactic signals of your own infinite birth, life, and death. Sometimes the signals are distant and fleeting, topographic sound-maps of distant events fading into noise. They may require adjustment, settling on another electromagnetic pulse mid-song. The disorientation exasperates the hopeful discovery of a strong signal - the albums most exhilarating and sparingly utilized moments. Predominately, the frantic search cascades through violent suns that need to buckle and break before they can make way for the clearest broadcasts. When they do, much like in 'Thin Air', it's such an astronomical release you almost forget to exhale.

It's easy to pick Amnioverse apart. Much of the criticisms that surrounded Ruinism are the same here: It's vexing, volatile and magnificently (and intentionally) imperfect. But it's the albums idiosyncrasy that makes it all the more apt and reflective of its themes. Something as comprehensive as this can't be easy, and the reward is elevated by the trials you entertain. Like any good slow-burner, in the end it's the challenges the album presents that bring it that much closer to a resounding end-result perfection.


user ratings (44)
3.9
excellent

Comments:Add a Comment 
Lord(e)Po)))ts
November 9th 2019


47288 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Mitch said he'd review Nostalchic if I reviewed this so here we are...

Ur go Reichy!











inb4 sach eviscerates me

Digging: Lapalux - Amnioverse

Relinquished
November 9th 2019


42174 Comments

Album Rating: 4.0

hell yea

brainmelter
November 9th 2019


6696 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

oh shit, didn’t know this was out

Digging: Child Abuse - Imaginary Enemy

Lord(e)Po)))ts
November 9th 2019


47288 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

haha i respect the placeholder rating ;)

Sinternet
November 9th 2019


20832 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

noice word salad



jk good review hyped to listen

Digging: Andy Stott - It Should Be Us

Lord(e)Po)))ts
November 9th 2019


47288 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

u could use some salad boi

Deviant.
Emeritus
November 9th 2019


32223 Comments


This is the best thing he's ever done. So in love with this

Digging: Lapalux - Amnioverse

Lord(e)Po)))ts
November 9th 2019


47288 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

*phewph*







Ruinism became one of my favourite albums ever pretty quickly, on a personal level i'm not sure if this will ever beat it out as I have some pretty intense life experiences linked with that album that boost the sentimentality factor, but this is definitely the biggest thing he's ever done.

Sinternet
November 9th 2019


20832 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

seeing him live on the ruinism tour was great, he def knows good visuals and shit. hopefully he tours again soon

Lord(e)Po)))ts
November 9th 2019


47288 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

I was having a hard time steering myself away from ignoring all the other new releases this week in favour of listening to this on repeat but new Andy Stott is literally one of the only things that could have diverted my attention for a moment and it's amazing too

Lord(e)Po)))ts
November 9th 2019


47288 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

@sint FUCK me i want to see him live so bad

Divaman
November 9th 2019


4423 Comments


Might check it out. You've intrigued me.

Digging: Bayside - Interrobang

Sinternet
November 9th 2019


20832 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

oh dude yeah he's sick idk what visual program he was using or whether he programs itself but it was such a fucking trip even sober



and fuck new andy this i gotta jam immediately

Lord(e)Po)))ts
November 9th 2019


47288 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

honoured to hear it diva

CaptainDooRight
November 9th 2019


4193 Comments


excellent music

Digging: Cadacross - So Pale Is The Light

Gyromania
November 9th 2019


28946 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Good writeup, sounds promising

Lord(e)Po)))ts
November 9th 2019


47288 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

Thanks m8

calmrose
November 9th 2019


5288 Comments


definitely need to check this, Ruinism was awesome

"but new Andy Stott is literally one of the only things that could have diverted my attention for a moment and it's amazing too"

OH SHIT need to check that too

Digging: Elliott Smith - Either/Or

Lord(e)Po)))ts
November 9th 2019


47288 Comments

Album Rating: 5.0

It's also amazing, stott ~club bangers~ front to back

Gyromania
November 9th 2019


28946 Comments

Album Rating: 4.5

Just downloaded this, pumped to hear it, really liked Ruinism. Big week for electronic releases - I hear there's a new Clams Casino too, never been a huge fan so not sure if it's worth checking out.



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