Music for Voyeurs - Music for Voyeurs

by Dan Clay Rating:4 Release Date:2010-06-01

The antithesis of Lemon Jelly's upbeat electronica, Rick Senley's ambient Music for Voyeurs is a study in melancholy, loss and a lonely sleepless world. Now he's inviting us in to observe it over 15 lengthy tracks but is it worth a sneaky listen?

Things certainly start well, opener I Can't Believe Why Someone Like You Would Want to Sleep With Someone Like Me begins with a fractured phone call from an evening's date fused with a fuzzy guitar and piano. Twins and Octopus continue the musical drive combining voices of evangelic preachers with floaty images of heaven. The latter's soft guitar blends well although fails to stretch its power over the full four minute running time.

This Life Isn't Really For Me, probably the album's most complete song, comes off like a Cranberries b-side with its layered, looping guitars, while Breeze's syncopated loops and drumbeats intrigue at first but then begin to bore - which is unfortunately symptomatic of the album as a whole. Many songs start well with a smooth guitar or tinkling piano intro before descending into similar beats and maudlin synths; The End and The View From Up Here Is Terrible are both good examples of neat ideas stretched too far.

Having begun the album while recovering from a bad accident, sleepless with pain and finding solace in the lost souls and figures of a dark television world at 4amit's no surprise Senley utilises these voices in several tracks. What at first seems unique though soon becomes routine and songs such as the intriguingly-titled Travelodge Love featuring a gruff man's plea to join him go nowhere slowly. It's hard not to feel that better editing, sticking to a 3 minute song limit and a 10 track album might have been a better proposition.

While Loss and Minsk's delicate and mournful piano holds a good melody, by this point the listener's patience has been tested too far after the previous 11 tracks deliver more of the same and little new. As the preacher's enthusiastic pleas close the album's final track Drink The Miracle Water you might have, unlike Senley himself, nodded off.

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