Mountains Air Museum

Mountains Air Museum
On their previous Thrill Jockey release, 2009's Choral, Koen Holtkamp and Brendon Anderreg's digitally enhanced acoustic play yielded a wondrous drone album so organic it seemed to crawl like ivy out of your speakers. Ironically, Air Museum, composed and played without any computer assistance, has the feel of a '70s electronic album: cold and square-toothed, nursed from inorganic matter. The current fancy for modular synth workouts, from Oneohtrix Point Never to Zombi, has scaled Mountains (or vice versa), with step programs and atmosphere filters a-go-go. Closer listening reveals that the duo's ability to churn and weave upward spirals of ambience hasn't been put aside. The new adaptations, as on "Sequel," swap frayed arpeggios for backscattered acoustic guitars. It should be obvious, as the saying goes, we will have to go to the Mountain(s) on this one, because they haven't come to us with a mere rehash of their discography. (Thrill Jockey)