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Review: EUS, Postdrome & Saåad – Sustained Layers (2012)

artist: EUS, Postdrome & Saåad
release: Sustained Layers
format: MC & Digital
year of release: 2012
label: BLWBCK
duration: 44:05

More tape revival goodness came to my attention by way of this excellent ambient collaboration on BLWBCK records from France. These three artists (from Costa Rica, the UK, and France, respectively) worked together on Sustained Layers, and the joining of efforts certainly paid off.

As the title suggests, layering of different textured sounds is the focus of this album, and the result is something of that aural geology that is the hallmark of many interesting ambient and drone records. Though dense and obscure, the opening tracks have a fuzzy calmness to their slowly moving melodies. That atmosphere is lifted, however, by the threatening theme of “Drone Me Tender”, a rather dark and nocturnal affair. The album weaves back and forth between these atmospheres in a convincing manner, introducing a touch of relaxation with “Limbo” and “Inner Cold”, but returning to heavier areas with “3AM”, of which you can view the ingenious video below. The final track provides a calm coda, a dawn after what has mostly been an album of nighttime moods.

Sustained Layers is perhaps an unsurprising album, but it is very well done and pleasant to listen to, on par with many of the releases from the Cyclic Law roster, for example. If you’re a dark ambient lover and a tape lover, best be quick, because at the time of writing there are only a few of the 67 copies left. Otherwise, there’s always the digital edition to check out.

Reviewed by O.S.

Tracklist:
1. Arrows of Night (6:44)
2. 3PM (3:56)
3. Drone Me Tender (5:00)
4. Limbo (4:15)

5. Inner Cold (8:58)
6. 3AM (5:34)
7. Destruction (6:47)
8. Dawn (feat. Metal Alvin) (2:51)