Review of Nail album by Isotherme

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The initial idea for Nail was inspired by a visit to the Opus 40 Sculpture Park in Saugerties, NY in May 2014. Opus 40 is a sculpture garden park created by sculptor and stone artist Harvey Fite, who dedicated 37 years to its creation, dying prior to the 40 years he imagined it would take to complete (thus the name) . Here, Harvey constructed a labyrinth of stone and sculpture, mostly using basic hand and traditional quarry tools. The park includes a barn museum, where many old tools have been preserved and are displayed. One such display boasts a large circle of nails: old-fashioned, raw, rusty, but also very intriguing in juxtaposition. Seeing Harvey’s nails set me off pondering the nails in our lives. What things pierce us, and what things hold us together?
It clearly was a great source of inspiration because this is an outstanding album. The sounds have been excellently crafted and used to create excellent soundscapes through great layering. There’s some great glitchy elements too, solid percussion and many of the songs have a nice build and release of tension.
Nail 1 A great opening song, strings create a great ambience with the background conversation. The bass acts as a drone and creates a nice tension. The spoken poem gives a great dimension and the spoken background vocals work really well, adding to the feel of the song.
Angels in Black and White A great rhythm to open the song accompanied by glitchy sounds. An acid type bassline and great synth sound propel the song which has really nice changes in feel and excellent layering and maintains a great momentum.
And Bathed in Citrus Cinematic pad sounds with vocal fragments in the background to open leads to an electric piano lead. It’s a great soundscape, building and releasing tension really nicely. Some great Spanish sounding guitar too.
Static Query A really nice arp riff with choral backing to open the song and a vinyl effect to give a nice edge. The song develops a great glitchy rhythm which propels the song really well and builds and resolves tension really well too.
Nail 2 Great synth sound to open with and a nice glitchy effect too. Percussion is sparse, the song builds slowly with excellent layering. Great sound effects change the feel of the song and there’s a great tension between these sounds and the string type of sound.
Increase the Separation Opens with a string type of sound against a drone and also has a glitch type vinyl effect. Again it’s a great soundscape with really nice build and release of tension. The bassline and percussion add momentum and the piano creates a nice change of feel. Again there is great layering of sounds.
Last Sliver of Sunset Another cinematic soundscape opening which creates a great ambience which slowly evolves with some great background sounds and effects. The song creates a great tension at times.
Nail 3 This song has a shimmery opening with an almost theremin type of sound and glitched out bells. The rhythm gives momentum and the spoken poem again gives a great dimension. Another great soundscape.
A Simple Light This song has a great piano opening against a background drone. Percussion really gives momentum and there’s a solid synth sound that adds a melody. There are really nice changes in feel to the song.