Maps & Diagrams: Delius (False Industries)
Tim Martin’s Maps & Diagrams project is generally quite active, reminding me of Celer, another incredibly prolific ambient act… in 2011 Maps & Diagrams released a whopping six albums (Celer released seven), so that this 24-minute EP proceeds them halfway through 2012 perhaps makes it a bit overdue. No worries though, his knack for gaseous, expansive clouds of sound is generally in full effect here. Some of the six tracks that comprise Delius swallow you up, like the chilly cool of “Avalanche” or the warm glow of opener “Sylvan Spring.” Some of the tracks have little details and effects that darken the tone… “Child Of The Cavern” is murky and mysterious, sounding just as cavernous and dark as its title suggests, which the disembodied voices that murmur under the surface of “Sylvan Spring” and “Novachord Spectrum” are just unintelligible enough to be troublesome. My favorites are the dense haze of “Yriarte” and the distorted growl of closing track “The Last Man on Earth,” probably the bleakest of the bunch, sputtering into digital distortion midway but always coupled with a reflective, droning underpinning. When it comes to projects like Martin’s, it can be difficult to always justify the sheer quantity of output against the cost for a listener, but this shouldn’t somehow negate the creative value of his music. One by one each release I’ve heard is quite beautiful, and Delius is yet another example.