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Boomkat Product Review:
The 5th and final LP in Alva Noto & Ryuichi Sakamoto’s highly esteemed ‘Virus’ series is treated to a remaster for return to circulation, some 10 years after it closed a prized chapter of their collaborations
Seeing off 10 years of minimalist classical genre-expanding-and-defining records, ’Svmmvs’ is perhaps the most brooding and quietly poignant of the lot. Less than half a decade later they would return for the much-adored soundtrack to ‘The Revenant’, and it’s not hard to hear seeds of that score planted in this one, fraught with a lingering sense of dread and foreboding that perfuses the album from its quizzically bittersweet keys and buzzing tonalities in ‘Microon I’ to the icy scape of ‘Kizuna’ and the gripping narrative turns of phrase in its spine-freezing highlight ‘By This River’.
The elision of Sakamoto’s keys, frozen, suspended, and trembling in time-space by Carsten Nicolai’s glitch techniques, has rarely if ever been bettered, and one can consider this album a real feather in their bonnet.