Crommie; Daniel: Skybridge
1991 was a busy year for Daniel Crommie, as not only did he release the purely instrumental Skybridge album on cassette, but also his Shadowgraph (reviewed elsewhere on SoT) album which arrived on the same now defunct format. So for Crommie fans, these two digital reissues, which arrive as part of the exhaustive "New Weave Archive Series" are must buys, although in my eyes, if you simply must choose one of the two, it should be this release, Skybridge. I've encountered quite a bit of Crommie's music in recent years, with his releases, whether they be solo, as part of Group Du Jour or in collaboration with Glyn Havard being varied, crafted affairs. However I have to say that, along with Between The Darkness And The Dawn (Crommie/Havard), Skybridge is the album I've built the strongest connection with.
An artist always willing to let his undoubted instrumental talent sit behind simple sounding, if craftily constructed music, Crommie took that approach to another level with Skybridge, the overriding feeling being one of light and space, with intricate yet relaxed themes being allowed to wash out of the speakers. The ability not to cram every second of this release with sounds allows the music room to breathe, leaving it to conjure up its own imagery as though it was a soundtrack to some misty, atmospheric film that was never made. Some of the expected Crommie motifs and themes creep in, with electronic beats tumbling down on to timely flute playing. However the short synthesizer wash of "Windowbox" weaves into almost electronic-Clannad territory, with the dreamy atmosphere being quite sublime. "Land Of Happy Motoring" sounds less like the Kraftwerk precision its title suggests, instead bringing to mind a hypnotic visit into a deep dense rainforest, before "Detour 28" beeps and clicks rigidly in a style that totally changes the focus, while retaining the same relaxed emotions.
None of the songs rise above a gentle crawl, but somehow the music feels vibrant and exciting as it casts its languid spell, with the simple, intoxicating "Little Bird" and Oriental feel of "The Ghost Of Motion" being completely spellbinding as they wander almost aimlessly through scattered notes and atmospheric layers.
Better known for electro-pop-rock-prog, Daniel Crommie created a sublime mellow ambient work with Skybridge, every track being beautiful and charming, yet vital and captivating.
1. Tiny Red Spiders
3. Land Of Happy Motoring
4. Detour 28
5. Ghost Town Baby Boom
6. Little Bird
7. Shiny And New
8. The Ghosts Of Motion
9. Silent Friction
Added: April 27th 2013
Reviewer: Steven Reid
Related Link: New Weave blogspot
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