Review of Northern [12k1037]

Boomkat (UK)

Northern is Taylor Deupree’s follow-up to the absolutely crucial Stil., and it’s an album that takes a markedly fresh direction in pursuit of all things sublime. Those of you who managed to track down his collaboration with Japanese band Eisi Every Still Day last year might already have some inkling of where Taylor’s mind is at right now, and it’s no surprise that Northern sounds like a continuation, or should I say distillation of the sounds he explored on that record. Instead of totally synthesizing his sounds, Deupree takes improvised electric piano, guitar, melodica and haunting field recordings as source material for his trademark Kyma experimentations – and the results are simply beautiful. We are left with something almost unclassifiable – a sound which could on one hand be described as minimal/experimental, and on the other be likened to the glacial pop sounds of Mum or Piana. This shift has in part been attributed to Taylor’s move from central New York City to the Northern reaches of New York State – a change of scenery that has made Deupree more open to vulnerability and beauty in his music. The “less is more” aesthetic, the sort of music that only bears it’s soul on repeat listens, the subtlety – Taylor Deupree has managed with Northern to return to the classic attributes of minimal music at its most engrossing, and in the process has made what will surely rank as his finest record to date. Unmissable.

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