Born in Spain, Hypnodial (aka Ilia Rodríguez) is a well-versed musician who has tried his hand at many different styles of music. Aether Alcoves is his latest album, full of new and old electronic sounds, it shows his experience from spending twenty years in the U.K. and one in Germany. The record was made at the end of last year using sampling, instrumentation, software synthesis and field recordings he sourced himself.
The album begins with Trapagaran, a minimalistic and slow developing track. I would have liked the minor chord progression that was the backbone of the piece to progress further than it did, but as it is ambient music it did not surprise me that it kept a slower pace. Old Cafe included sampling, with percussive tapping and a soft white noise. I enjoyed the slow melody, but would have liked to hear the white noise continue into the next track to provide more consistency. The sampling continued in Fruela II A.M. In its beginning, there was a windy sound and a dampened beeping which reminded me of a truck reversing. As the song went on, this repetitive beeping transformed, alternating between two octaves. I thought the tone-sliding synth added much needed interest to the tune, with a subdued conversation ending the track.
Star Ceiling ’91 reminded me of the eighties. I felt like at any moment a catchy pop tune from the likes of Whitney Houston would burst through. Dream Machine signalled the beginning of a slight percussive atmosphere, with the next track using a crackling record before getting into some additional classic eighties synth. There was a steadier progression in Amaranthine, with a cool sci-fi feel utilised in Samphire. Lagomorph had a dampened buzz added to the primary synth sound, ending with a surprising major chord.
Delta View took on a similar vibe to Samphire; although, it finished with a strange sound which I found difficult to place. The next song I would have placed over a movie scene where a team investigates a strange new world or space craft. There was certainly a sense of wonder to this track, aptly named Blue Lava Sky. The last track began similarly to the penultimate song, but with a modern tone.
I am no expert in ambient music, so most of my observations are just that: observations. This review has come down to my own personal taste, and with that firmly in mind I give it 8/10.
To listen to his music, check out his Bandcamp
For more information, visit Hypnodial’s Facebook