REVIEW: Yrsel’s “Abraxas”

 photo Yrsel_cover_zps6d55d70e.jpg C.J. Larsgarden and Julien Louvet have returned as Yrsel, and their meditative sounds are back with their new album, Abraxax. From the outside, it sounds like these songs are constructed out of what would be considered intros and outros to songs, where something trailing in or out becomes the entire song structure. One might here this and wonder if there’s any more to it, if there might be any “action” involved but its ambient vibe is the action in question, you just have to listen, pay attention, and allow it to move you at its eerie pace, or eerie non-pace. “Asat” features vocalist Alice Dourlen and together, it sounds like some kind of artful performance from Bjork, and I’m sure she would get a lot of praise (and balanced ridicule) for doing something like this. What I love about the song is the amount of time between vocals, where you want Dourlen to sing but you’re drenched in the walls of sound vibrating, maybe sacred, maybe unholy, maybe there, maybe not. On other tracks, it’s synths causing eternal drones and long echoes as guitars are plucked and placed into the mix with the volume control. It’s almost inhumane, or that you assume the sounds are not being created by man or woman, and the only person you have to interact with the sound and what you’re hearing is yourself. Abraxas sounds wholly internal but it could be a celebration of everything that exists in the external. Or all. Or nothing.

(The vinyl and CD pressings of Abraxas can be purchased from Europe via The Tuguska Label or 213 Records. Digitally, you can stream & listen and/or purchase below via Bandcamp.)

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