Loscil Plume

Scott Morgan paints on the wind… or is that he paints with the wind? Whichever it is, on his fourth full-length for Kranky the Vancouverite casts his gaze skywards and gently exhales nine drone-based themes titled for airy phenomena. Plume pulls back from the more "real” instrument overtures made on the previous First Narrows, though it retains some vibes, piano and e-bow guitar for the mix. Much like a West coast skyline, the wispy and foggy elements press densely down upon the surface, reducing them to shadows and traces. On "Steam,” Jason Zumpano’s Rhodes maintains a loose bass chord pulse throughout, with flickers and echoes of colour nearly describing dub-like shapes. Josh Lindstrom’s xylophone and vibes criss-cross the rubbery snapping path of "Chinook.” Morgan, who also drums for Destroyer, manages to steer the sounds away from potential traps of dirge and mope, including the understated sprightliness of tracks like "Bellows.” Where other sampling composers have moved over to more conventional song forms since the initial clicks’n’cuts boom, Loscil has cycled back with his most minimal work since Triple Point, his debut album that was rooted in thermodynamic principles. Seems appropriate when your head is in the clouds. (Kranky)