Marumari, The Wolves Hollow

Michael Heumann The Library Discography Haunted Ink Haunted Ink Review Archive The Inkbottle

Released: May 2000

I've reviewed Marumari's other two CDs on this site. Both are excellent works in their own right--filled with very happy melodies, interesting glitches, and warm, groovy tunes. But those two CDs are no comparison to this CD. This work is simply awesome in scope, with tracks ranging from the Tangerine Dream meets Boards of Canada epic ("War of the Wolves") to the opening track, which melds whale noises with a 4/4 building block dance track (complete with scratching, glockenspiels, and backwards noodling). Every idea that is considered and tried out in the previous two CDs--like combining fantasy film scores with environmental and natural sounds, and flooding them all through very intricate rhythms and song structures--is brought into sharp focus here. As well, the songs retain a thematic consistency that is not evident on the first two works. That is, the songs, despite their variety, fit together seamlessly. The opening track, for instance, ends in a flourish of backwards bass sounds, scratches, and synth sweeps, which sweep up and back and then down until there is nothing left. The next track then opens with a flutter of electronic bleeps that seem to rise out of the embers of the first track. This transition is certainly memorable and clever, but it is more than this. The movement from ethereal flourish to mystical bubbles is reminiscent of nature itself--the way twilight comes crashing down (as the sun sets), and is replaced with a flurry of darkness and stars. Since the sounds throughout the CD work to echo electronically the sounds made by all elements of life (not just wolves, as the title suggests, but every magical sound that nature creates), this transition works both aesthetically and thematically to help reinforce this metaphor. This is Marumari's third CD in the last year, and there promises to be another CD later in 2000. Not bad. Considering how great this work is, I can't wait to see what happens next.

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