ProgressoR / Uzbekistan Progressive Rock Pages


Raphael Weinroth-Browne - 2020 - "Worlds Within"

(40:40; Raphael Weinroth-Browne)


This is the debut solo album from Raphael Weinroth-Browne, a composer and cellist who is probably best known for his working in groups such as The Visit, Musk Ox, and Kamancello, as well as recording and touring with the mighty Leprous. Here he is experimenting with his cello, taking it to the limits as he uses every aspect of the instrument to create this single piece of music which is broken into ten movements. All the sounds contained on this release, melodies, harmonies, riffs, textures, and even percussion, were created originally on the cello and then either left alone or treated with effects. There is a lot of reverb, looping and repeated melodies which then provide a platform for Weinroth-Browne to demonstrate multiple different techniques throughout the complete register of the instrument, from plucking staccato high up the neck or drone-like bowing. It is a warm album, as even with sounds being treated there is something about a cello which is deep and meaningful, and the result is something which is akin to dark ambient in many ways, yet more experimental and challenging than “just” that genre. This is modern classical music being given a contemporary twist by someone who knows exactly what is possibly from the instrument and uses modern techniques to extract more from it than one would normally expect. It is dark, rarely playful, but enthralling and intriguing all at the same time. It is perfect evening music, to be sat in the dark with a glass of rich Pinot Noir to hand, and possibly some aged crumbling cheddar to heighten the experience, playing this through headphones is an experience to be savoured. The press release says “It is a cinematic sound painting that plays on the listener’s perception of time, evolving gradually and fluidly, but always in motion”, and for once I understand exactly what they mean and could not have put it better myself. This musician is pushing his instrument and his imagination to the very limits of what one expects from a cello, yet it is always musical and always with forethought as opposed to experimentations just being thrown together. Well worth investigating.

Progtector: May 2020

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Raphael Weinroth-Browne


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