Tim Hecker's sound gives coloration, form, and
intensity to something that never entirely says what it is. It balances
carefully crafted melodies and occasional sonic dissonance, taking a certain
solace in recognizable forms; but that aside, compositions forge into
the constantly mutating and indefinable.
Hence this album can be appreciated on numerous levels.
Hecker's broad, slowly evolving brushstrokes and the sharp momentum of the overarching structures invite listening to the work as a whole, while it's also rewarding to approach from a more specific standpoint and appreciate
the sublime level of detail underneath. On a large scale, for instance,
"Stags, Aircraft, Kings and Secretaries" is marked by a rubber-textured, muffled melancholy, but beneath the surface, there is an underlying network of quietly abrasive electronics, placid piano and flecks
of incidental color. On "White Caps of White Noise," the squalling sonics grow
more rabid. Crunchy, bone-crushing electronics beat against jagged detritus and
flurries of heavily manipulated guitar feedback, moving to an orgasmic climax
and being lulled to sleep by an undertow of delicate organ
Within this montage of crystalline frequencies, low synthetic hum and
rubbery, prowling basslines lies a series of minor-key melodies, emitting a warm
melancholy that heats the track from the inside. A woozy, aged atmosphere thus
this infrastructure of
avenues, dungeons and hidden rooms. Hecker's ear for harmony also infuses
these compositions with
a kinetic energy, all but assuring safe travels through the sprawling
structures, rife with subatomic
particles and gaseous clouds. Harmony in Ultraviolet refines
Hecker's emotionally complex and powerful voice, providing pieces that are as
harmoniously and texturally challenging as they are absorbing.