Eluvium is the brainchild of Matthew Cooper. With exception of a guest clarinet player on one track, Cooper played every instrument on Lambent Material and it really shows. Opening track “The Unfinished” rings with Brian Eno ambiance, without having much to bring to the table. The electronic drone throughout the song is a nice build up of tension, but Cooper fails to provide the release before moving on to the next track.
“Under the Water it Glowed” scares up a melody for the featured guitar, but again the real star of the song is the resonance of notes and chords that have already been played. The elegy-like “There Wasn’t Anything” is very sparse and somber. It is noteworthy because of the before mentioned inclusion of the clarinet which injects the song with not only a new sound but gives the song a slightly different tempo as well.
“Zerthis Was a Shivering Human Image” is where the album falls apart. This track is fifteen minutes of pure pretentious repetition. Against an unchanging wash of two chords Cooper adds dense layers of white noise and rough-hewn feedback. Yes, I understand it’s melody vs. anti-melody, but that’s not enough to make me want to listen to it.
The closer, “I Am So Much More Me That You Are Perfectly You,” has a nice chiming melody courtesy of an electric piano. As lovely as it is, it still doesn’t break the throbbing mid-tempo pace that holds Cooper’s music in a death grip. I don’t really want to say that this album is bad, because it’s not. But having just recently listened to two excellent post-rock albums –Sonna and Parlour – I just can’t recommend this album to anyone but the most ambient starved listeners.
Temporary Residence: http://www.temporaryresidence.com/