Boomkat Product Review:
Pye Corner Audio terraforms utopian, lysergic, beatless shoegaze ambient scapes with Ride & Oasis guitarist Andy Bell
Featuring Bell on five of its 10 tracks, ‘Let’s Emerge!’ leads on from PCA’s ‘Social Dissonance’ (2020) album for Sonic Cathedral to frame his gauzy synth magick at its most starry-eyed, romantic and world-building. Anyone attuned to Martin Jenkins aka Pye Corner Audio’s lustrous run over the past decade may find themselves missing his signature, purring and propulsive bass drive, and will need to readjust their rosy gegs to his billowing new forms, but once in there it gets pretty lush.
Andy Bell’s sheets of textured shoegaze guitar elide ideally with Jenkins’ spongiform synths on the tentative billow and vaulted vocal harmonies of open ‘De-Hibernate’ and the arcing bliss-out ‘Lyrical’, returning in spangled Eno-esque shimmer on ‘Haze Loops’, while pointing to woozier horizons of Emeralds on ‘Saturation Point’, and bringing it all together with vocoder and thrumming pulse on the finale, ‘Warmth of the Sun’. They all lend a new dimension to PCA’s signature sound, but to be fair we prefer him solo, as with the keening mass of ‘Does It Go Dark?’, and tonal float of ’Sun Stroke’, with his evocatively descriptive grasp of hazy timbre, akin to Abul Mogard or Alessandro Cortini, in best effect on ‘Luminescence’.