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New Review of my latest release

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(Cover art supplied by AND created by Herd

Artist: Herd

Title: Tangents 41 – 47

Released: 2011

Label: FSOLDigital..com

Format: MP3

Genre: Abstract, ambient, experimental

Before I kick this off, I want to thank Herd personally for sharing the tunes with me. I really am hooked.

Tangents is an ongoing series of tracks, and this particular release features tracks 41 through 47. It is all seamlessly sewn together to make one longform piece, clocking in at almost 20 minutes. It is truly a unique piece of music. Right away, I am launched into a strange, dark yet vivid world. Odd organic and electronic sounds chirp and squirm in and out of view, mixed with treated string samples, and extremely light percussion clips that are otherwise elusive or not there at all. There are treated synth snippets and they’re flawlessly layered into the world Tangents creates. Here and there, some strange voices flutter in and out, juxtaposed with captivating electronically created scapes and swooshes.

This is a piece that, weather intentional or not, really strikes an emotional response from the listener. For me, that is what makes this piece so wonderful. This is an expertly layered piece of abstract ambient genius. It is haunting, yet soothing; dark yet surprisingly light and warm; minimal in spots yet still deep and spacious; it’s amazing. This is the perfect track to plug into directly with headphones and get completely lost in. At times, I feel like this is a soundtrack to something truly terrifying film (Maybe even The X Files would work!) and before long, it gently guides you back to a safe and familiar place. Or, rather, this is something to blast on your stereo at midnight with every light off. Very breathtaking.

To put it simply, I am finding elements of field recordings, ambient soundscapes, and abstract experimentalism here, and when blended together, you have something unique and that you may be hard pressed to find elsewhere. This is my first experience with Herd, and now that I have been able to get a taste, I am hungry for more.

Which of course, brings me to the final point: should you buy this? If you’re a fan of this genre, you will not be disappointed. This is a very well-crafted piece; it is a fine example of how one can push boundaries. If this is your first experience with this genre, this may be a bit mature for you, but it certainly is not something you should avoid. Trust me, it is not often a piece of music completely floors me, and while I know everyone out there has their own taste, I must say without a shadow of a doubt that this needs to be heard. So, yes! Go to FSOLDigital and put down the £3.00 ($4.69 US) and download it now!

5 out of 5.

Herd has various other Tangents available on Bump Foot, Future State of Rhythm, and Entity Records, all digitally released. You can also check out the Herd Myspace for info and to preview some tracks. I have since taken a listen Herd’s earlier releases and I have to say, this is one artist I will be keeping an eye on.

– The interview should be happening soon!

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Yeah, I was going to listen to this, but then it all went tits up.

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