NICHOLAS SZCZEPANIK – “THE CHIASMUS” (Basses Frequences)
"Ambient Music must be able to accommodate many levels of listening attention without enforcing one in particular; it must be as ignorable as it is interesting" Brian Eno, Music for Airports liner notes, September 1978
Ambient. It’s a term we hear a lot of and have done ever since it’s brief flirtation with popular culture in the mid-90s. However, as Kevin Martin remarked in his sleeve notes to the landmark compilation “Ambient 4: Isolationism”, much of it wallowed in sloppy clichés, new age nonsense and obvious samples, moving away from Eno’s vision as laid out above.
All of which nicely brings us to “The Chiasmus” an album thankfully free of all the problems that Martin outlined above. It is a veritable sonic banquet of new sound and textures. This is not the music of the spheres, this is the music of the deepest voids of space.
The accompanying CD booklet features a suitably complementary range of photography that reflects the mood of the album. There’s an ambiguity at the heart of “The Chiasmus” – as to whether the actual mood is a solemn one or perhaps a more gentle introspection. Either way, it’s certain that this album reflects Eno’s above definition of ambient. It can serve as almost subliminal background music but it also rewards closer attention and everything inbetween. This is not “new age” ambient and it is not “dark” ambient. It is ambient music as it was always meant to be.