Marsen Jules Nostalgia

Like a Walt Disney soundtrack hijacked by William Basinski, Martin Jules' newest effort elicits a mood that's part wistful romanticism, part elliptical retracing. Returning to the themes and techniques that marked Herbstlaub, his strong 2005 effort for City Centre Offices, he repurposes orchestral fragments to describe a more interior autumnal experience. The first half of the album, most notably "Through Blood and Fire," hazily reveals the machinery behind the organic synthesis of strings, piano and plucked guitar notes. The effect evokes a gradual and unsettling self-awareness of nostalgia's manufacturing. Slowly the mood shifts from slight unease to a more Hipstamatic-filtered retro vision, as though the illusion of "better days" becomes more and more believable. Apply this to your histories as you please. (Oktaf)