Anyone reading this site for a length of time would have noticed my slight obsession with the guitar-playing of Robin Guthrie. Mr. Guthrie has not been very productive lately, or, rather, he has been focusing on production work rather than releasing original music. This has left me with something of a gap in my regular listening schedule -- normally, there is always a new(ish) Guthrie record that i have on my phone for those times i need some ambient guitar music (i.e., almost all of the time).
I mention this because Lucho Ripley is an artist very similar to Mr. Guthrie. The music on Mirakler consists of guitar distorted and twisted, echoing and shimmering, in layers. That's it really. This is a pretty simple album in that sense, but it really works.
There are 5 tracks here in about half an hour, and it all really pretty.
The record starts off with Poledouris, just waves of guitar in shimmering layers of hazy ambience. This is a floating song that kind of drifts.
Ateísmo picks up a little steam. This moves deliberately, but not forcefully, the guitar less heavily echoed. This one reminds me a lot of Guthrie's Imperial.
Kyoto is my favorite here, a really beautiful tune. He layers in a lovely melody over the echoing guitar. On La torre de la victoria Ripley reaches the midway point between Robin Guthrie and Maurice Deebank. The guitar positively sparkles here.
Sobre la oratoria is another of the (slightly) more forceful tracks here. Like Ateísmo the echo is turned down a slight bit, so that individual notes can be heard lingering, instead of it all just turning into a sonic haze. It moves along nicely, and Ripley throws in another pretty little melody.
And finally the record ends with Vostok 6. This song grows slowly, deliberately as more and more layers build up, until it is dense, a thick sonic fog.
I really like this record, but then again i am kind of the target audience for this sort of thing. Fans of Guthrie, Vini Reilly, Michael Brook, post-rock, and ambient music will all want to check this out. Mr. Ripley is doing interesting things, and i am grateful for him tiding me over until Mr. Guthrie can get back to us with more original material.