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Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Orcas -- Orcas


My kid used to make me Google sea creatures.  One time, he said, "Type in 'Orcas.'" I did, and up came this album. At that point, Orcas self-titled debut was an upcoming release, but someone had already made a video for the single, "Carrion."
My son and I watched that video. He thought it was scary, and I thought that someone had somehow videotaped the inside of my mind.
Orcas is, to quote Wikipedia because I am not even about to pretend I am cool enough to know who these two guys are, "minimalist composer Rafael Anton Irisarri and multi-instrumentalist singer-songwriter Benoit Pioulard." I can say that the two combine to create a very dreamy sound, a wash of gentle guitar and piano, floaty, spacey atmosphere, and enveloping harmonies. If you haven't figured out from the hundreds of reviews I've written before this one, I'm big on atmosphere, and this album has a lot of it. There are a few, generally molasses-drenched beats that carry this sound far, but if Orcas has a flaw, it's that the album could use a bit more of them, or something to ground it in its final third, where it just sort of aimlessly floats away. Still, this is a strong debut, and in doing my research for this review, I see Orcas have released a second album with two additional members. It's called Yearling, and seems to directly address the flaw I've just mentioned. I've got to check that out.

2012 Morr Music
1. Pallor Cedes 4:43
2. Arrow Drawn 5:15
3. Standard Error 5:21
4. Carrion 5:09
5. A Subtle Escape 4:09
6. Until Then 4:25
7. Certain Abstractions 3:55
8. I Saw My Echo 4:56
9. High Fences 5:02

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