Wil Bolton is a UK ambient artist who blends looped mellow guitar and field recordings. It's a simple formula: wander around with a tape recorder and get some layers of random sounds, then play some light instrumentation and loop that over the recordings. It is both random and purposeful: there is a random element to wandering around with a tape recorder, an element of chance that is then purposefully edited and added to. There are many different artists doing this sort of thing.
For this release (Mr. Bolton's 23rd release since 2010!), he wandered around Hong Kong capturing the sounds of everyday life in that massive city. What we hear are the squawks of birds, the buzz of conversation, the clattering of cooking and of eating implements. There is a moment of rain at one point, and the roar of vehicles moving down the road.
These sounds are recognizable and yet divorced of their meaning. What kind of road is it? What is being cooked? What are those voices talking about? Field recordings often have a dissociated otherworldly feel to them. At least to me.
Over this, Mr. Bolton plays guitar, lightly, his instrument tinkling against the hushed sounds of Hong Kong.
It's a nice effect, and this is a pretty release. There are 5 tracks in just about 44 minutes, so there is quite a lot to listen to. I find that the layering works best on headphones. With the sounds so close, i can separate the various recorded sounds from the loops and the guitar.
I find this type of music to be relaxing and calming. It helps me clear my mind when i am at work trying to troubleshoot some software. Your mileage may vary, of course. But fans of ambient and found sound will enjoy this.