Piano Magic Low Birth Weight

The latest release from England’s Piano Magic fleshes out their exquisitely fragile ambient pop aesthetic. Low Birth Weight shines with its collection of gentle pop soundscapes. A revolving cast of players contribute to each track, all centring around guitarist and lyricist Glen Johnson. The album’s calming common thread are the shimmering echoed guitars that never fail to conjure memories of Durutti Column. Vocals alternate between spoken word and simply sung tracks most often handled by Caroline Potter and Simon Rivers. The sparse use of warm analogue electronics and the soft musical complexion bring to mind American bands like Low, although Piano Magic has a distinctly British vibe, owing an appropriate debt to the hypnotic ambience of Spacemen 3 and My Bloody Valentine. The album’s packaging completes the angelic effect with stunning humanised photographs of taxidermied cats and rabbits. The frozen activity captured in these chilling and humorous images reflects on the carefully composed audio still-life embodied on Low Birth Weight. (Rocket Girl)