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Submers

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Album Review

Clearly a producer with an unapologetic love for the conceptual, Scott Morgan's second album for Kranky as Loscil takes on an aquatic theme — each track is named after a submarine. However, not a whole lot has changed in Morgan's approach from his debut. These tracks sound only a little more aqueous than the ones on Triple Point, continuing to carry wide-open spatial qualities, with the odd hint of dub occasionally thrown in for variation (with its lathery suds of dubspace, "Le Plongeur" rivals Rhythm & Sound's best work). The only significant difference is the emphasis on waves of rhythm over thumps and pulses. "Triton" is the most wonderful thing Morgan has produced yet, an elegantly dramatic, filmic composition based on a submerged two-note bass hum, a series of rhythmic noise effects, and what sounds like a sampled and drastically altered orchestral arrangement. The notes are emitted lucidly, but they resemble a string arrangement as heard through some type of mildly muffling filter — a body of water, perhaps? If the only track on the disc that follows it hadn't been produced in honor of the 118 people who died on the Kursk, a Russian sub, it would've been the perfect closing. Submers tops Morgan's impressive debut and provides further proof that the field of ambient techno continues to have plenty to offer. If Markus Guentner's In Moll was 2001's surrogate Gas record, Submers is the 2002 edition.

Biography

Born: Canada

Genre: Electronic

Years Active: '00s, '10s

Scott Morgan apparently appropriated his Loscil alter ego from the operation code within the sound synthesis system Csound. Although he admitted he rarely used Csound to create his compelling minimalist recordings, he asserted that looping and oscillating were the basics of his music-making process. Drawing stated influence from contemporary post-techno musicians such as Oval and Wolfgang Voigt’s Gas, as well as early electronic music pioneers such as Brian Eno and Raymond Scott, he...
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Submers, Loscil
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