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Violence of Discovery and Calm of A

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Album Review

Released simultaneously as an LP on Staubgold and a CD on Touch, Violence of Discovery and Calm of Acceptance marked an effort toward accessibility for Rafael Toral without comprising his artistic integrity. The ten tracks are short, mostly three to five minutes long with one notable exception. The music follows a soothing mood, easy to get into on a superficial level, fascinating when studied more closely. Loops of aerial electric guitars produce ambient soundscapes retaining little connections with their instrument of origin. A few delicate melodies are encrusted in some of these constructions (like on "Liberté"), simple lines reminiscent of Loren Mazzacane Connors, Biosphere, or even Fennesz' Endless Summer (released at about the same time). On the closing "Mixed States Uncoded" one finds a post-rockish lazy nostalgia that was quite impossible to imagine upon hearing the opener, "Désirée," a soundscape much closer to something that would come out of a metallic sound sculpture than an electric guitar. Yet these differences all fall into place to form a beautifully sequenced record that can be enjoyed as an ambient album or as a wicked gem of guitar mastery. The first 1,000 copies of the CD edition came packaged in a stunning wallet. Strongly recommended. ~ François Couture, Rovi

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