Boomkat Product Review:
Classic pair of releases by Pakistan-born Portlander Ilyas Ahmed, who originally released the albums Between Two Skies and Towards The Night in runs of just 50 copies each.
These primitive recordings house some remarkably beautiful sounds, largely focussed on Ahmed's solo guitar playing and mournfully howling voice. Between Two Skies opener 'Black Midas' recalls moments of Vincent Gallo's Buffalo '66 soundtrack, combining lonesome piano chords and sporadic bell chimes with that distinctive guitar and voice combination.
There's a drifting, improvisational bent to Ahmed's music, meaning a looseness that interacts with the hypnotic, somnolent flow of fingerpicking and quiet falsetto. Towards The Night follows an even less direct path, dabbling in extended durations and bluesy guitar improvs lasting up to quarter of an hour each. There's less in the way of additional instrumentation and vocals, which only lends a heightened sense of solitude and meditation to the pieces.