You may not have heard of Philip Toshio Sudo’s book ‘Zen Guitar’, but you can perhaps imagine how an album inspired by his ‘teachings’ might sound.
Andrew Howie – already with a cult following on 2000s late night radio as Calamateur – is in meditative mood on this side project.
Opener ‘Of Its Own Accord’ is based around a simple guitar hook, building over a mesmerising five minutes before fading in a wash of keyboards. Next, ‘Exhausting To Live With’ is a minute of undulating, saw-tooth synth, ebbing and flowing into ‘A Rare Treat’s ambient drone.
That’s the pattern, soothing yet challenging, spanning shorter, more experimental noises tracks versus the textured feel of Eno, Mogwai or even Mark Knopfler on the longer pieces which build soundscapes and offer a chillout zone in your head.
This article originally appeared in the Blackpool Gazette.