Saturday, November 1, 2008

The Remote Viewer - I Can’t Believe It’s Not Better (Mobeer)

Getting back to melodic electronica, I turn my attention to Andrew Johnson and Craig Tattersall, who go by the name of The Remote Viewer. Their previous releases include two albums on 555 Recordings and three LPs on one of my favorite labels, City Centre Offices. This time, the duo releases their latest album, I Can't Believe It's Not Better, on their very own label, Moteer, that has previously graced our eardrums with Clickits, The Boats, and Part Timer. Well... It's actually released on a sublabel of Moteer, called Mobeer, which [with a pun on a name] they claim to be Moteer's micro brewery. This has been an anticipated release, with the last output from The Remote Viewer being over three years ago. The sound of the album quickly brings back the memories. The clicky ambiance and looping pads are complimented by soft breathy vocals by Nicola Hodgkinson and Andrew Johnson himself. The atmosphere of subliminal sounds and fragile percussion is at one point cut through with folksy banjo strumming. Fragments of piano, broken toys, field recordings and other found sounds recreate an experience of unwrapping dusty memories from within an old suitcase. And here's a collector's dream come true: the copies are limited to only 375 worldwide and happen to be out of stock already on boomkat. The lucky ones received two 3" mini CDrs in a hand made brown envelope and a printed beer mat with a peculiar message : "i went and picked up my complimentary corporate wear today. it came in a big cardboard suitcase. when i got home i unpacked six identical shirts, two suit jackets and two ties. no trousers though. the woman i rang said that trousers were out of stock (as popular now as ever). this could provide everyone with a big problem on my first day. i did however get two belts. one to wear and the other presumably, to hang myself with." That perhaps shines some light on the state of mind behind the ten untitled tracks. Usually I'd compare other artists to The Remote Viewer. But for those just waking up to their sound, I place them in a cloud among Jacaszek, Jasper TX, Peter Broderick, Porn Sword Tobacco, and Machinefabriek. | |

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