Audioglider & Xspance have been incredibly busy and productive since their first collaborative album project ‘Kollision’ was released to critical acclaim in 2017 on Tripswitch’s Section Records. Their quirky, future retro melodies and hooks, syncopated percussion and bass, are a breath of fresh air amongst a mass of rigid stylistic formulism and over the past couple of years, both have had a whole heap of releases and remixes, individually and together, on a huge variety of labels that cross the musical spectrum.
During this recent burst of activity, the duo felt the irresistible urge to create a follow up to their debut album – one that built upon the tapestry of influences that were already evident in previous work, but would also raise the bar, push them to greater heights and produce something outside of their comfort zone. The result is the widescreen, colour-saturated vistas of ‘Sensory Reception’.
‘Sensory Reception’ is an eclectic collection of accomplished creativity exploring mood, texture, tempo, emotion, groove and style in a coherent and wondrous way. Drawing influence and inspiration across decidedly fluid genre boundaries, the breadth and depth of inventiveness – from the soaring opening beatless dawn chorus of ‘Seratonin’ to the magnificent, thought provoking ‘Synesthesia’ finale (featuring enigmatic spoken word & vocals by Daniela Rhodes) – is a joy to behold.
With stated influences as disparate as Boards of Canada, Orbital, Hybrid, John Hopkins, Max Cooper, Sasha, Way Out West, Ulrich Schnauss, Cocteau Twins, William Orbit, Ride, Slowdive and others, it is no wonder that this 11-track opus is an expansive trip.
Audioglider has had a long journey navigating through electronica’s many phases from warm and fuzzy machine music through the strobelit hypnotica of the dancefloor and beyond to laidback shoegaze, including two superb solo albums (‘Subaquamarine’ and ‘Accidental Beauty’) on Section Records. Xspance has also previously released a solo album on the label (the excellent ‘Melodyheart’) and is inspired by film scores and uplifting music that tells a story. His style is laidback, detailed and melodic, basing his sounds around the progressive/electronic and ambient axes.
The duo’s masterful hypnotic sensibilities abound throughout ‘Sensory Reception’ – whether it be the seductive hip-swinging groove of ‘Vantablack’; the swirling ethereal delights of ‘Flip The Switch’; or the heart-melting beauty of ‘Lost In Shadow’ and title-track ‘Sensory Reception’. Flitting between the clipped, staccato grooves of the brooding ‘Cumulus’; gently floating ‘Hawking’s Law’; and the deeply delicious, acidic twinge of ‘Peripheral Vision’; to the sparkling joy of ‘Glimpse Of Light’ and angelic analogue perfection of ‘Spherical’; this album celebrates opening up your senses to everything around you and to boundless new possibilities. It is a collection of music that journeys to the end of that elusive musical rainbow and is well worth the ride.