Described by its creator, R. Cole Furlow, as an album of “New Age Instrumentals” – inspired in part by the catalogue of the Windham Hill label – Low Variety’s #1 opens as an uneasy ambience. A collage of vari-speed drones and sampled, pitch-shifted monologue. It`s off-set by a one-note post-rock raga and warm electric piano, but it doesn’t really prepare you for the prettiness that follows.
Choosing the guitar as his tool, this is Furlow working through a process of healing. Coming to terms with divorce. Settling for small consolation. Musically moving between folk-picking – dueling in overdubbed intricacy – wonky, wobbly electric solos, and tortured blues arcs. The close mic`d acoustics, the reverbed banjo strings, sometimes undercut by treated, glitched textures, and techno bleeps. Interrupted by a burst of muffled breakbeat, and the odd industrial growl.
The closing track Thin Wood for me is the standout. Its wistful Americana recalling Goran Bregovic`s Old Home Movie. Where bell-like chimes accompany Furlow`s homages to the dexterity of Sparklehorse`s Mark Linkous, and flamenco maestro Paco de Lucia.
You can find out more, and order directly, over at FatCat.