Monday, September 6, 2010
Karsten Hamre - Through the Eyes of a Stranger
One of my newest collaborators and gaining ground on Malignants stronghold over me in terms of awesome consecutive dark ambient releases, First Fallen Star has delivered a handful of neuron scrambling releases one of which being this one here. Karsten Hamre is no stranger to the scene, having releases work under aliases: Arcane Art, Penitent, The Flux Komplex, veiled Allusions, Defraktor, and now his own name and Dense Vision Shrine. Karsten is also a visual artist and not only designs his own cover art but also does live shows.
Through The Eyes of a Stranger is one of those rare albums that sort of stops time when it come on because it has a certain substance that completely catches your undivided attention whether you intend it ot or not. Tracks like " Keepers of the Bones",and "Remember the Past" showcase organic textures and an alluring and almost warm analog feel that instantly brings to mind the more cosmic and dronier work of Tangerine Dream (Phaedra,Rubicon) and Cluster (71), yet they are created using digital equipment. Other tracks such as "Darkness Gently Falling" and "The End of the World" tread the black waters of minimal symphonic scores as the synth swatches feel as if they are being frozen to a dead stop as they come toward you, then suddenly they speed up and whoosh past you to almost dissapear into some unseen void.
The brilliance of Karsten Hamre is obvious in the way that he can blend cosmic/celestial drone, neo-classical, dark ambient, and an almost psychedelic or maybe half-psychotic state of mind into seven tracks that somehow actually do put the listener in the mind and reality of someone else. This would be the perfect soundtrack to a film in which the enitre film is shot through the yes and experiences of the main character, you never see him/her, but you see and hear how that person interacts with their surroundings. This is definitely one of my new hot picks currently and highly recommended to those who enjoy the more cinematic aspects to their ambient.
For fans of: Tangerine Dream, Cluster, Klaus Schulze, Phelios, Collapsar
Audio samples and contact info:
Dense Vision Shrine: http://www.myspace.com/densevisionshrine