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Malcolm Galloway - 2015 - "Dancing About Architecture"

(72:45; Glass Castle Recordings)


This 2015 album contains five songs, but with one more than 10 minutes in length, another 16, while “Spiral” comes in at more than 35, this is very different indeed to what had come before in terms of length. Musically it is also the most diverse, although that probably isn’t surprising given the amount of time he has here. Pieces such as “Swordfish” are dramatic and powerful, with slow strings combining with electronica, marimba, oboe and harp to create something which feels all-encompassing. Listening to this takes me to a new world, something which can be both safe and dangerous, stable yet fractured, where the light can be both clear and refracted. It is hypnotic, beguiling, entrancing, powerful, and incredibly dense. Although there is a lightness to the individual musical strands, when they combine it forms something very structured and strong indeed. “Spiral” is the highlight, starting again with Galloway’s favoured marimbas building a rhythmic and musical pattern where he can start to drop in other musical elements such as gently placed piano notes. He is putting place a structure, a form where he can add other elements that may also repeat, or may just make an appearance for a few bars before disappearing again. It all feels very organic, and one can imagine all the musicians watching for visual cues as they move through the piece. This is lighter, with far more space between the different instruments as that in itself is used as a key part of the piece. This is music to be listened to when one has the time to sit back in a comfortable chair, put on the headphones, close the eyes, and be transported away. Minimalist yet evocative.

Progtector: November 2019

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Malcolm Galloway


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