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Boomkat Product Review:
At first glance 'Through the Cardial Window' may seem like rather a cheesy album title. "It's from the heart" they shout with tears in their eyes and fists held high - but for once, this bland statement rings true. Kowalski began to immerse himself in the music that would become 'Through the Cardial Window' as he recovered from major heart surgery - the operation involved a 'cardial window' being made to drain fluid from the heart... it all becomes clear now eh? This superb album sees Kranky returning to that organic ambient territory that reminds us why we love them so much, sharing the same sort of headspace as Greg Davis's 'Somnia' album or Keith Fullerton Whitman's 'Playthroughs', moulding ambient passages of sound into involving transitions. This is likely down to his source material - instead of taking the usual routes of guitar drone or Max/MSP synthesis (or both) instead he has used the likes of a broken floor heater, recordings of The Mills Ensemble filtered through a guitar pickup, and even post-metal band Isis. The result is far less odd than it sounds, creating a powerful mixture of music that is serene without ever losing your attention - with the opening track 'Ashes from Evermore' having the kind of emotional clout of Cliff Martinez's Solaris soundtrack; all deep basses and xylophones. This is a wonderful addition to Kranky's ever-inspired catalogue and comes highly recommended to all followers of quiet, homespun music.