Ben von Wildenhaus, 'Great Melodies From Around' (Riot Bear)

7
Great Melodies 
From Around
Critical Mass
Release Date: November 1, 2011
Label: Riot Bear

by Jessica Hopper

On Great Melodies From Around, Ben von Wildenhaus strays far from his Pacific Northwest garage-rock roots, floating somewhere in the creepy soundtrack ether, distilling bits of acoustic and electric guitar into swaths of slow, mesmerizing weirdness. Occasionally, there are vocals, but they're mostly just scraps of sound. Sine waves, cool tones, and dissonant drones make up ?entire tracks, shimmering and vibrating. Von Wildenhaus stops shy of avant-garde wonkery, though, working his influences -- modern primitive folk, cassette hiss, Angelo Badalamenti's Twin Peaks score -- into a tight confluence of meditative anti-shredding.

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