II is the second album by Richard, there isn't much info on the web on this American musician. He has a minimalist myspace site and that's about all I could find. It seems Richard is a person who doesn't need much graphics surrounding his sounds. And once I start listening to his release, that all seems very fitting. The first track «Obelisk» is a minimalist and contemporary intro. Relaxing ambient very slowly moves it's way into a more experimental territory. It's a brilliant intro indeed and sets a very fitting setting for the rest of the release.
II has a certain element of melancholy lingering throughout, the sounds carries my mind out to sea. Under the sea, in fact, where everything is dark and cold. "24. September" functions as an audio driven submarine. Even though II is so filled with melancholy, I don't find it depressing. I'm guessing Richard is a man who has come to terms with his own demons and has found a way to channel his emotions. This is mature music because it's not something someone would be able to put together in 2 weeks. There is a lot of thought put into the composition and the sounds used, and I imagine quite a bit of concentration as well. II is very well executed. It really is.
I wouldn’t say it's difficult music, but it's not something everyone would enjoy. I do believe you have to be someone with a serious interest in sound in general. I am one of those people. "A shadow in the cave" is a brilliant track, it's more direct and also has a darker setting than the previous tracks, complimented with dirty noise elements and metallic sounding drums. Certainly moving into industrial territory, and towards the end, most definately noise. A fav track for me.
I really respect how Pineal Eye builds tension. Everything is so controlled, yet he manages to keep it flowing and soothing. The timing is perfect as well, nothing is overused or drawn out too far he knows exactly when to stop or to change direction in every single track. By now I feel safe in the room that is Pineal eye, as I am reassured he won't fuck up the remaining two tracks by doing something totally crazy. I am able to let go and enjoy the soundscapes, I am indeed "set adrift" by the time said track moves towards it's end.
As the last track, with the poetic title "Towers of silence" starts up, I am basically in awe of Richard and this masterpiece of a release. Electronic sounding bird noises swarms round my head and I find my self in a vortex of bliss. I LOVE this track. I don't want it to end. It's like Richard has injected some strange hallucinogenic into my brain and I am now totally submerged into the universe that is II. And as the track moves towards it's end, i slowly move towards the surface and takes my first breath of fresh air. All good things must come to an end, even the magical trip created by II. The good news is: You can press play anytime you want.
Finally I want to add that the cover is magnificent. Truly beautiful.
A masterpiece. Simply as.
USA, free download, 2010
5: A shadow in the cave
6: Set adrift
7: Towers of silence