Google Search Julian Lynch. Now look anywhere for a Wikipedia page. Having trouble finding one? That’s because it doesn’t exist. Expect that to change in the coming weeks, as Julian Lynch has taken his strange brand of ambient folk and even stranger brand of marketing (Did you see a MySpace music page while doing that Google Search?) to a new level, a move that will certainly earn him a few more stripes of success, desired or not.
His previous release, Mare, was as rich in subtle dynamics as it was in vague, yet inspiring vocals. The album received some major press and indie cred, and rightfully so. The album not only revived the glory days of dissonant freak folk a la Castanets, and early Akron/Family, it also pushed the genre into a realm of ambient music previously undiscovered. The follow-up to his groundbreaking last release is precisely on that course. Staying wonderfully true to form, Lynch takes his music even further into the ambient genre, and adds layer upon layer of rich texture.
Lynch touches moments worthy of Sigur Rós a few times on the album, with tracks like “Terra” and “Fort Collins”, both abundantly resonant. The very next moment, however, he returns to his gleeful simplicity, as on tracks like “Water Wheel One” and “Ground”. A seemingly extravagant juxtaposition, sure, but one that makes for a powerfully captivating listen. With every listen, a new layer of depth is uncovered and a new side of Lynch is revealed. Whether it be his affinity for drawn-out woodwinds or his love of kinetic synths, Lynch displays his enormous capacity for music of all sorts. Closing the album on a note of triumph, he takes a look backward at folk music in its traditional sense on “Back”.
Truly, this is an album filled to capacity with variety and deft musicianship. Lynch has done it again; only this time, he’s done it on a bigger scale, with a bigger stage behind him. This disc is definitely worth a listen or two. Or 20.