Windows Bryan Carrigan 2012 / Peonies Music 59.9 minutes
"Windows" is electronic artist Bryan Carrigan’s third album to date and a first for me. Carrigan has been involved in a multitude of award-winning recordings and film scores as well as his own music. He is also known for multiple roles in the recording studio as music editor, programmer, and sound designer. In 2011, Carrigan was a co-producer, co-writer, and engineer on Zone Music Reporter’s Music Awards’ Album of the Year, "Surrender" by Jeff Oster. On "Windows," Carrigan did all of the composing, performing, production, recording, mixing, and mastering, so this is truly a solo project! The music itself is more ambient than melodic, sometimes ethereal and sometimes earthy, sometimes rhythmic and sometimes atmospheric. It is very easy to listen to while working or driving, yet is fascinating to listen to with full attention. The ten tracks range from 2 1/2 minutes to over 13 minutes, giving the ears and mind a varied musical exploration that flows seamlessly.
“Into the Light” begins our journey with a dark and mysterious piece of space music that brightens as it evolves. Despite the feeling of vast and endless darkness, there is also the suggestion of peaceful, effortless floating that is very soothing. “Seventh Stone” picks up the energy level with a catchy rhythm played behind slower, more dramatic atmospheric sounds. I really like this one. “Morning’s Gift” is a favorite. Light and joyful, the swirling keyboard sounds dancing over gentle percussion is intoxicating. “Masquerade” is a fascinating combination of floating ambient sounds with an energetic rhythm that never stops moving. “Fields of Poppy” has a simple melody played on chimes with birds singing in the background. As the piece develops, more electronic instruments enter, creating a multi-layered ode to joy and beauty. “Horizon” takes us back to the feeling of deep space, this time with more urgency and intensity but no sense of danger or threat - I like this one a lot, too. My favorite track is “Pendulum,” which goes much darker and more mysterious. Also very intense and visual, this would be great in a film score in a scene where the director wants you on the edge of your seat! “Solace” concludes the album with 13+ minutes of slowly-floating space exploration that’s very relaxed and peaceful.
"Windows" is a great choice for fans of electronic and ambient music as well as for people who want to explore this genre a bit! It is available from www.bryancarrigan.com, Amazon, iTunes, and CD Baby. Recommended!