Scarless Arms is the name of a diverse Ambient music project by talented German musician/producer/playlist curator Tyves Oben. Risen out of the ashes of his former music project, place4tears, Tyves developed Scarless Arms into a unique setting, incorporating a wide plethora of sounds, styles, and moods into his artistic output. His most recent effort, Twenty Twenty, is a suspenseful Dark Ambient journey into an unsure mind wallowing through a dystopian postmodern world.
Released on December 26, 2020, Twenty Twenty showcases a cathartic release of dark energy. It comes across with an ominous, foreboding sense as if the current ramifications of present day society have had a significant impact on the overall vibe of the album. The tracks that do have beats slowly creep towards the listener while serving as a stark reminder that there is no turning back from despair. Neither is there a happy ending waiting just around the corner. Brace yourself for a listening experience that takes you outside your comfort zone, and strap tight. “Lockdown” eerily opens the album, setting the tone for what lies ahead. A brief moment of clarity sets in as “Skinny Questions” haunts the listener with an eerie, low key synth that drones throughout. This drastically changes course, however, as “Smalltown Mentality” makes it’s way into the picture. It begins with a series of semi-tonal, staccato keyboards that creep toward the listener like a spider slowly inching towards its prey. Another notable composition that stands out is “A Bleeding Heart Traced in Steam” - an amorphous, dream-like composition that provides for an uncomfortable walk down a road best not ventured.
“Posthuman Cinema” is another chilling track; an apocalyptic storm-like wind dominates the track as if the listener is sucked into the center of a cyclone while watching remnants of what was once had viciously become obscured while thrust into infinity. “Untamed Calmness” and “Quarantine Extended” both end the album with an open-ended sentiment. Where civilization may end up, one will never fully know. However, the impressions that I get are that it’s a bleak path that may lie ahead – one where dread, anxiety, and paranoia are what light up the road – unless enough effort is made to instill and cause change in a beneficial way for the greater good. There is no holding back on the latest Scarless Arms release, Twenty Twenty. You’ll find some of the most unsettling, spine-chilling, unnerving soundscapes you’ve ever heard. But all in all, it is tinged with a certain kind of wonder and beauty that will leave you glued to your seat as you listen. Filled with mystery, eeriness, peculiarity, and uncertainty, I highly recommend Twenty Twenty as a stark reminder of the finite nature of our very own mortality while doing one’s own part to avoid falling into the vicious cycle of repeating past mistakes.
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