A.F. Conde - Echium
Released: October 6
Comprising only seven tracks but spanning well over an hour, Echium stands as a dark and enveloping addition to the Veinte 33 Records lineup. Each track has its own unique timbre, ranging from gentle and subdued to much more distorted and vigorous. The album opens up with "Allium" a reverb-soaked piece that evokes a deep space feeling. Not deep space as in outer space in the realm between galaxies. Rather that deep space that one can fall into in the depths of a dissociative state - shadowy and unclear with the mind reeling to make sense of what it sees. "Crocosmia" takes a different direction, giving us a semi-harmonic ether to float around in though it never brings comfort, only a sense of tepid wonder that never allows you to feel one way of the other.
Then there is the title track, "Echium,"which gives us the loudest experience of the album. Distorted pads drone in the back hypnotically, as if to reprogram while the airy pads sitting atop all of this slowly lulls us in to the depth of the track. The album ends on "Mirabillia," which almost feels like a slight callback to the opening track, though a bit lighter in tone. At the end I was left with a weird feeling, as if I had taken a full trip around only to end up back where I started in this strange mental loop. It was odd, but the use of varying tones and atmospheres that differ while calling back to each other made for a rather refreshing drone experience.