Piano Magic

Piano Magic

Bliss Out Vol. 13

Darla

Bliss Out is exquisite in a meticulous and painstaking kind of way. Piano Magic shapes electronic music like tiny watchworks – all of the pieces click and whir together to form a quiet harmony. Piano Magic constructs their pocket symphonies to be ageless, ancient and pointing to a distant future all at once. It’s all so unhurried and understated, it could be music made for librarians.

There are two songs to this record, each made up of several independent movements, thematically linked by feelings of warm melancholy, hidden treasures, and faded love notes.

The first movement, “A Trick of the Sea,” is reminiscent of early Coil, with the sounds shifting and scattering very deliberately. Then the female vocalist begins to quietly intone words of domestic heartache and kitchen-sink trauma to a dazzling effect. It’s the essential boredom of the everyday. Nothing earth-shattering, mind you, just the tiny mysteries. “Halloween Boat” begins tellingly with waves lapping against the shore, fading from gray mood to gray mood. Distant bells and sighs merge with archaic synth patterns while a cute sad boy whispers in my ear about “the hole in his heart that’s the size of a girl.” For some reason, my heart breaks for this boy in his Halloween boat with love letters in his pocket, all perfectly soundtracked. The boy will stop talking too soon, and electronic chimes will take his place, but the waves never stop crashing. Darla Records, 625 Scott #303, San Francisco, CA 94117

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