Tarwater - Adrift - Albums - Reviews - Soundblab

Tarwater - Adrift

by Rich Morris Rating:6 Release Date:2014-10-03

German electronic outfit Tarwater continue to pootle away on the sidelines, their music still gently walking the line between lo-fi industrial and delicate, folktronic tone-poem. Ronald Lippok (better known for his day-job as one-third of To Rococo Rot) supplies the monotone, sprechgesang vocals which form the centrepiece of most of the songs here. On numbers such as ‘The Glove’, and ‘The Tape’, this makes Tarwater sound like a Germanic version of Underworld, infatuated with post-rock and prog-folk rather than house and techno.

The other type of Tarwater piece, as evidenced on lovely numbers such as ‘Devon Saturday’ and the title track, is beautiful ambient numbers deftly combining electronic and acoustic instrumentation. This second category also has the advantage of being a little less wearing than the Lippok-sung tracks, which can feel a bit one-note and hectoring. Despite the fact that the likes of ‘Stone in Exile’ boast inventive and scintillating rhythms and textures, it can still feel a bit like a sozzled barfly chewing your era off in an English theme-pub.

‘Milenasong’ alters the album’s feel by featuring vocals from folk artist Milenasong, aka Sabrina Milena, and is probably its strongest moment. Otherwise, despite some lush and creative sounds, this feels like a strangely flat record, more a collection of unfinished sketches then fully realised pieces of music.

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I love your use of the phrase "pootle away"

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