The AMBiENT PiNG has gained a lot of attention over the last six years, a reputation as a nurturing and supportive environment where like-minded artists can interact and develop their craft. And while it originally started as a local community, it's quickly grown into a larger entity, with support and interaction from a variety of North American cities and around the world. Truly it's become a significant global presence in the ambient/electronic music scene. And now with the release of "PiNG AMBiENCE
III: STRiNG THiNGS", the AMBiENT PiNG is poised to make an even greater impact. The third compilation issued by the PiNG, PA3 features a fantastic collection of guitar based work from some of the leading artists in today's ambient scene.
The disc begins with Phil Ogison's track "Aftaglidder", a lovely looping work where themes and phrases spiral around each other, floating. It's a wonderful way to start the disc, setting the mood for what's to come.
Michael Diamond follows with a piece called "Stellar Drift". I'm not familiar with Diamond's work, but I'm certainly interested in hearing more based on this track. A slow orbiting space-y tune, "Steller Drift" features sustained notes which ebb and flow, slowly evolving over time, weaving in and through each other in lovely ways. Very impressive!
dreamSTATE offers "Clearing", a dark ambient work punctuated by beautiful arpeggio work and effected guitar. What can I say about dreamSTATE that I haven't already said before? They make wonderful music that is both inspired and inspiring, and certainly this track stands with the best of their impressive catalogue.
PiNG favourites Sylken submit "Mother Sun", a collaborative piece with guitar from Eric Hopper and synth by Joe G. I've long been a fan of Eric's guitar work, and "Mother Sun" reminds me of why I hold his music in such high regard.
Anomalous Disturbances contribute "Languorous Liasons", a soft and sparse dark ambient track that brings to mind cold nights alone in space with the stars your only companion. Notes blend together, rising and falling throughout the piece, coming to the fore and then drifting away again. A lovely example of the power of minimalism.
Diatonis submits the track "Currents", a beautiful drifting work with subtle melodies and notes that hang and bend and flow like lava. There's a shimmering elegance to this track, a lovely quality that makes it one of my favourites on the disc.
"Sailing Into Calm Remembrances" by Mark Mahoney returns us to space with a very nice track where steady drone tones weave and flow around each other creating elegant spirals and turns. Very nice work.
Matthew Poulakakis of Automatic Fats fame puts forth "Guitar Cloud 3", a drone based piece that swells and builds throughout its length. It shimmers in places, amorphous sounds that take shape as the piece progresses. Very impressive work.
"Burned Down" by Matt Borghi employs looping guitar throughout, playing phrases against each other to create an inspired latticework of sound. A truly stunning piece.
Cybertarist Paul E. Royes' track "The Universe Within" is a tension filled piece, a track where tones bubble and percolate over a repeated bass form. The sense of movement, displacement, and travel in this piece is almost palpable, a feeling that edges up the spine sending shivers throughout. A fantastic listening experience!
"Desolation" by Styrohead is filled with overdriven guitar and oscillating drones, the sound of a thousand suns pulsating in time at the heart of the universe. It's a rare treat to see a track by Styrohead on the comp, a live favourite at the PiNG who has released very little recorded output to date.
"Talking Taking" by Ambient-TV offers an inner space track with beautifully crisp and clean guitar playing overtop a steadily building drone. It's an impressive track, one that brings to mind some of David Gilmour's work from early Pink Floyd.
Aidan Baker closes the disc with "Pressure Change", a slight and subtle track that captures Aidan's mastery of the improvisational medium and his magical control of the guitar. I could go on for hours about the delicate beauty of this piece, but really I couldn't do it justice. Listen for yourself, you'll know what I mean.
Undoubtedly PiNG AMBiENCE III offers some of the best artists in today's ambient music scene. With thirteen tracks of guitar-based work that showcase a number of artists who regularly play the PiNG along with assorted PiNG supporters from farther afield, PA3 is truly a testimony to the talent associated with the AMBiENT PiNG.
by Rik at Pink Things. Reprinted on Ambient Visions