The Field - The Follower [VINYL]


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Swedish sound-smith Axel Willner is well-known for his mastery when it comes to the allusive layering of loops, but with his last album "Cupid's Head" a tougher soundscape started to replace the soft-hued sonics of his ambient-infused techno, giving it a darker mood and stronger footing than before. 'The Follower' goes even further in blurring the lines between concrete experimentation, body music and precisely laid-out arrangement, leading to one of the most rhythmically and texturally engaging listening experiences in Willner's catalogue. This is ambient techno on steroids, with a dose of metal machine music for good measure.

Title track 'The Follower' opens on a surprisingly muscular groove and sets the tone for The Field's most floor-attuned work yet - a raw bounce dripping with foggy acid and marching percussion catches long-standing fans off-guard while providing a perfect entry point for curious newcomers. Pulling no punches, Willner's knack for entwined drones and mutating loops is very much in place, but finds powerful support in an excitingly sturdy bassline and guitar-like screeches.

Next up 'Pink Sun' quickly finds its pace with one of these perpetually rotating hooks Willner is known for, while 'Monte Veritá' specialises in tunefully glitched vocal samples with accompanying bass workout - a powerful and propelling album build-up that finds its first moment of introspection with the mountainous 'Soft Streams', an exciting synth journey that emits both ethereal and kinetic propensities. 'Raise The Dead' presents The Field's focused sonic storytelling at its minimalist best, gyrating around a basic motive for a while before joining an earthy beat and opening up the sunshine roof. It's a winding, hypnotic track that also works particularly well as transition to the album's remarkable closing chapter: the slow-paced 'Reflecting Lights' shows Willner at his most refined, evoking his often-quoted appreciation of Wolfgang Voigt's ambient project Gas as well as an obvious fondness for kraut synthesists and their trance-inducing exploits.

"'The Follower' is about old myths, finding utopia and how mankind repeatedly makes the same mistakes over and over again", explains Willner. However he remains an artist who prefers keeping the mystery intact - his latest full-length certainly doesn't need more introductions: it evidently shows a maturity and consistent evolution of The Field's trademark style of creation, but may very well be considered one of his most vibrant and visceral outings yet


01. The Follower
02. Pink Sun
03. Monte Veritá
04. Soft Streams
05. Raise The Dead
06. Reflecting Lights

Artist The Field
Title The Follower
Label Kompakt
Format Double LP & Download
Release Date 1st April 2016
Cat Number KOMPAKT350

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