Verdict = Odd, Arresting Chamber Instrumentals
Aaron Martin is in the business of composing and performing spectral requiems for aliens and monsters. Currently it seems as though business couldn’t be better and Martin is certainly at the top of his game mining the most awkwardly beautiful minor key odes to the fallen. River Water is the follow up to Martin’s 2006 full length, Almond, as far as I can tell, but he also worked on various other projects between LP's. Recent exploits with Dutch experimentalist Machinefabriek and an even more recent EP sized release last November mark a continued trail of Martin’s golden touch. On River Water Martin finds the middle ground between competent chamber orchestrations and kitchen sink experimentation, creating mysterious, melodic pieces that seem as familiar as they do otherworldly. Martin’s is an amazing tight rope act in which he miraculously manages to keep his pieces from becoming too abstract or banally familiar leaving a constant tension that is irresistible to listen to. I mean, there may be humans at these alien/monster funerals so he can’t get to wacky right? While most comparisons to his music fall flat, there is a slight air of early Silver Mount Zion instrumentals that in my humble opinion (and yes, in contrast to Wooly Mammals recent acclaim) were the group’s strongest suit and occasionally Rachel’s reveries. All in all, a fan of avant garde, experimental, instrumental, post rock and the like should dive into River Water (no pun planned, but whatever, I’m all for horrible puns and am obviously a proponent of bad writing) because there is definitely some extremely rare alien type gold to be had here (which I shouldn't have to remind you is much more rare and expensive than earth gold).
Aaron Martin on Virb