Friday, 7 March 2014

Tycho - Awake (2014)

Tycho, 'Montana'

Info: Tycho (aka ISO50) is the performance name of Scott Hansen from Sacramento, California who spent his 20's as a graphic designer before a serious injury led to him being stuck at home for a prolonged period. During this time, at the age of 24, he started creating his own music culminating in the release of 2003's The Science of Patterns E.P., however, it has only been in the last few years that he has focused more on this area of creativity. 

Awake is the fourth album from Hansen following on from 2011's Dive which was really the first major step toward establishing himself as a full-time musician. His sound has been widely described as similar to Boards of Canada, and it is definitely ambient music, but with a bit more energy than you'd usually expect, on my first listen to the single and title track 'Awake' I was thinking The XX after mysteriously waking up one morning and attempting to make upbeat music. 

The album is short enough, it's 8 tracks only run to 36 minutes but given the genre this is no bad thing, you could arguably have tracks that endlessly meander on for 10-11 minutes so in a way it's refreshing to have a recording that doesn't overstretch. Aside from the 3 singles on the album, all of which are excellent, ('Awake', 'Montana' - above & 'Spectre'), I also quite enjoyed third track 'L', a very, very mellow floaty song, and the fifth track 'See' which really feels like a late 90's early 00's first stab at chillwave, with a tiny but noticeable hint of Groove Armada Vertigo era.

This album is a real pleasure to listen to and repeated listens make it grow on you exponentially! It's probably one of those 'selfish albums' you have to listen to on your own, or in certain social circumstances....

The album is released on 18th of March, at present there are no Irish gigs planned. 

Rating: 4 / 5

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