Boomkat Product Review:
After famously having his entire earthly possessions stolen from a van parked outside his house the night before he was due to relocate from Seattle to New York, Rafael Anton Irisarri returns with "A Fragile Geography”, his first album since 2013’s "The Unintentional Sea”.
In some respects it’s his most convincing work to date, perhaps perversely benefitting from having to completely rebuild his studio, affording Irisarri the opportunity to re-assess his production style and opt for something altogether more original and intuitive then his previous albums. "A Fragile Geography” is a more fluid prospect than its predecessors, the production seems more detailed and the transitions from barely-there drone to towering layers of noise seem relatively effortless.
“Reprisal” achieves this with the kind of serene intensity that might give Tim Hecker a run for his money, while "Empire Systems” repeats the trick with a more euphoric palette, sounding somewhere between early, instrumental Sigur Ros and prime Ulrich Schnauss - epic in its scale, intimate in its effect. “Hiatus”, however, is perhaps the best thing here - a classic Badalamenti backdrop offering Irisarri the opportunity to try something different up top, a disharmonious fragment of melody imbuing proceedings with the feel of something genuinely menacing lurking around the corner, something that no amount of bombast could achieve.
In all - it’s a rewarding listen, especially recommended to those of you into the darkened aesthetic of classic Miasmah releases or the smokey, Lynchian ambience of Bohren and Der Club of Gore, minus the jazz.