GM010 - Loscil - coast/range/arc - Glacial Movements Records - 2011

First Review

First and foremost, loscil is, and has always been, headphone music; any of Scott Morgan’s works should be listened to, enjoyed, and cherished with this in mind. Coast/Range/Arc should also be enjoyed with a simple caveat: do not look for a beat, you won’t find one. The Canadian sound artist’s most recent release, this time fittingly on Glacial Movements Records, is the follow-up to 2010′s preposterously stellar Endless Falls (which essentially functioned as a manual on how to craft a modern ambient record – incredible spoken-word performance by Daniel Bejar of Destroyer aside). However, rather than a continuation of the ebbing ambient-with-field-recordings mixture so soon after Endless Falls, loscil opts to drop the beats entirely and to build timeless soundscapes inspired by the coasts, mountain ranges, and arcing hills of the Pacific Northwest – and to great effect. Album opener “Black Tusk” travels through 10 minutes of pure ambient backdrops, ending with what sounds to be an imitation of cold Pacific winds. “Fromme” utilizes the low-note-drop in creating rhythm, for which loscil is consistently known, while “Névé,” one of the record’s highlights, yields an incredibly dark & isolated mood with just 8 minutes of expertly manipulated drone. Coast/Range/Arc closes on the majestic “Goat Mountain,” if drone/minimal ambient can be called at all stately. The varied moods shown through First Narrows, Plume, Submers, Endless Falls, and now Coast/Range/Arc show Scott Morgan to be fully capable of a range of ambient styles, but a few things remain the same: 1 hour of free time necessary, comfortable chair suggested, ‘cans required.

NOWLIKEPHOTOGRAPHS (album of the week)


Second Review

Hot on the heels (at least in terms of Scott Morgan’s productivity) of last year’s fabulous ‘Endless Falls’ is this latest slice of glacial ambience from Loscil. ‘Coast / Range / Arc’ takes a markedly different approach to its predecessor - the focus is still Morgan’s very specific brand of hazy ambience, but gone are the clipped rhythms and low-slung bass which was his calling card. This is ambient music in the classic sense. Morgan cites the coastal mountains of the Pacific Northwest as his main influence, and you can hear the creaking glaciers clearly in these epic soundscapes. Similar to Thomas Koner’s epic trilogy, Morgan’s cinematic drones evoke a sense that there is something lurking just beneath the ice, that there are worlds out there untouched by prying human hands. There is a meditative calm on show, and Morgan has blended subtle field recordings with the cavernous synthesizer sounds he has perfected across his esteemed body of work very nicely indeed.


Three Review

‘Coast/Range/Arc’ is the latest album by Loscil, a.k.a. Canadian Scott Morgan. By now the man has a few die-hard fans in his corner and deservedly so; his work with Kranky alone has produced some of the most solid electronic albums of the last decade, and, equally important, some of the best for that consistently strong label. Loscil’s ‘Coast/Range/Arc’ is, according to the one-sheet, “centered around the coastal mountains of the Pacific Northwest, studded with glaciers, lakes, waterfalls, canyons and epic views…They are constantly changing, yet represent such a seemingly stoic fixture in our relatively short lives”. But you don’t need the one-sheet to sense any of that; it’s all there in the music. As for the approach: Loscil strips away all beats/glitches and gives a synth-based drone album that is sure to both surprise and please fans.

‘Coast/Range/Arc’ opens things up with “Black Tusk”, a long drone piece with seemingly little movement. The song sounds like it was built around an organ played from behind a thick wall, and it’s amazing how emotive the track is from note one. It immediately takes the listener to a specific place, both melancholic and mysterious. Like most of the pieces on the album it has an almost glacial quality to it: thick, icy, ever-changing. That idea of mountains slowly changing in ways that are imperceptible is reflected very clearly in the music.

“Fromme” begins with the sound of water running in a stream. And while many artists use the sound of water in songs, this stream sounds hurried, almost violent. Again, it’s a fairly straightforward piece made up of field recordings and one or two primary synth-lines. The spare arrangement of the song is reflective of the approach used throughout the album. This song also introduces another common thread to the album: a synth-line taking the place of the absent beat, using an almost death-knell rhythm. This rhythm fills the void of missing beats but also adds to the sense of tension that fits so nicely with the idea of nature changing in epic but unknowable ways.

By the beginning of “n_v” the tone of the music has become much more threatening. The song fades into a thick layer of menacing drone, almost like waking up in an undercurrent. The source sounds used to create the song have an almost metallic and cold feel to them. The whole song feels barren and unrelenting. Again, the recurring approach to Morgan’s theme seems to be one of mystery and awe-inspiring beauty. No small feat for a musician to achieve, but even more amazing considering how Morgan has limited himself in the tools at his disposal to accomplish this.

“Brohm Ridge” and “Goat Mountain”, two thick drone pieces clocking in at more than 10 minutes apiece, finish things off. Both songs continue this path of menacing drones, as if the album has slowly evolved into something darker. By the album’s end the listener feels surrounded by this world of ice and mountains.

It’s always interesting to hear a musician refine their approach. It’s even more interesting when that musician strips away many of the resources that often define their work. Most of these songs consist of one to three different layers of instrumentation, most of which are nakedly audible. There is no trickery to the album, and yet it retains a sense of mystery through its narrative tone. ‘Range/coast/Arc’ is an important entry into the Loscil canon if for no other reason than the fact that it gives the listener insight into the fundamentals of what makes the man’s song writing work. Glitchy rhythms or not, Loscil still has the goods to reach his listener in very affecting ways. - Review by Brendan Moore for Fluid Radio


Four Review


Scott Morgan (aka loscil) is my favourite local ambient musician. His new recording, coast / range / arc is about mountains, among other things. It represents a distinct departure from the calm, pulsing, billowing electronica that characterizes the majority of his recorded catalogue to date, and for which he’s best known.

Loscil’s music has always looked to the local for inspiration. His 2004 release, First Narrows (i.e. Lions Gate Bridge) was a kind of Autobahn for Vancouver (ie. a sonic travelogue akin to Kraftwerk’s 1974 LP of that name). 2006’s Plume was inspired by wind currents and 2010’s Endless Falls was an extended reflection of the grey and rain of Vancouver’s long winters…and occasionally a good portion of our summers.

Though we met up on his porch on an unusually warm and sunny day this May, this has been a particularly cold and wet spring, and so I began by asking him about the role of rain on Endless Falls.

SM: I think it’s a subconscious thing but it bubbles to the surface, obviously. With Endless Falls, rain is the key to the whole record. Not only do I use the actual sound of rain, but all the other sounds are processed using the sound of the rain, so in a way it constitutes the musical notes. The actual ambient sound around us becomes the ambient musical sound of the record itself. I like that idea. My little studio is in the back of the house and when it rains it’s very much a part of whatever I’m working on. That recording of actual rain on Endless Falls was made in my backyard so it’s like I’m giving listeners a small piece of the experience I had while I was working on the record.

MM: The new CD on the Italian Glacial Movements label (run by mountaineering devotee Alessandro Tedeschi) features a more static sound with seemingly fewer musical events taking place over the course of the disc’s six tracks, and each is named for a local mountain peak or ridge. You’re not a mountaineer like Alessandro but you are clearly inspired by the Pacific coastal range here.

SM: I’ve been to Black Tusk and Grouse, obviously. Part of it is going to those places, but another part of it is seeing it from afar, and I have a view from my office at work. I can see both The Lions and Grouse Mountain. Something that’s always fascinated me is the fact that we don’t think of them as dynamic. We think of them as very static. They’re fixtures and they seem the same every day, other than maybe being covered in snow (or not). But they are actually incredibly dynamic on a timescale we can’t perceive, and there’s something about that I like, that timelessness. Imagine writing music on that timescale, thinking in terms of millions of years. There’s something fascinating about that, and it’s part of what I’m trying to create with ambient music—the sense of a timescale that’s outside of real time, outside of our daily experience of time, which is obviously much faster.

MM: The only way to really solve this one would be with generative music, that which employs randomizing systems to create an endless, non-repeating piece of music using recombinant and regenerating sound sources. Unfortunately it’s hard to do that with the limitations of the CD.

SM: I like the sense that each one of those pieces on coast / range / arc feels like it’s been cut off at the beginning and the end, that it could be much, much longer, and that they are just little snippets, like seeing just a hint of the horizon, it’s meant to seem so much more infinite.

MM: Almost like a core sample, or ice core sample. Or if you’re talking about our relationship to the local mountains, most urban dwellers know them only through “view corridors.” Have you worked with generative systems?

SM: Yeah. I’ve done some generative stuff, but it’s always towards a seed of an idea rather than an installation-type thing where you could just turn it on, walk away and leave it running. I’ll use generative processes to make a little unit of sound and I’ll take it out and apply structure after the fact. But I do like the idea of creating a generative piece that could just be left on forever.

MM: If there’s the technology around and maintained to see it through!

SM: Wind chimes are still the best generators, the best generative music ever written!
But I’m born and raised here, so I feel like the mountains are part of me in the sense that they form my own backdrop and it finds its way into my music. There’s something about a mountain landscape when you’re off hiking in the woods. There’s the solitude, an emotional connection and the fact of being alone. We’re lucky we’re close to the mountains, the ocean, the forest and the water. Those things are always on my mind in some weird way.

MM: In some form, these things are universal even if not directly experienced. I think of some of the music by Cluster, Popol Vuh, Harold Budd and others, and how it’s so utterly fitting beyond the pastoral or desolate environs of its creation. Two of Ralph Towner’s compositions inspired the official naming of craters on the moon!

SM: There are certainly some universal things. Space has played a very influential role in a lot of different music. I think it’s about that individual [composer] wondering what’s out there, what are we all about, and the need to express something we can’t put into words. So people unite around something like space as a metaphor for a search for meaning, and landscape functions pretty similarly to that. If I lived in the desert would it have the same influence on me, play the same role in the music that the mountains, ocean and the rain do? You can’t really know until you move to the desert, I guess.

MM: Musicians like Austria’s Fennesz and Germany’s Alva Noto are producing music that, in addition to being created from field recordings and/or being influenced by landscape, seems to pull sound from the invisible thickness of electronic signal-suffused air. What’s next for you after mountain ranges?

SM: Actually, I just curated a new record with the theme “the world without us” (after Alan Weisman’s book of the same name, which details the hypothetical impact on the planet of sudden human disappearance and, more importantly, the abandonment of our myriad systems of survival and energy generation). Chris Herbert contributed a piece that was all about radio waves and what would linger beyond, like snatching remnants out of the air, decaying electronic signals that might still be hanging around. —Mark Mushet


Five Review


Hace poco más de un año en esta casa se habló de “Endless Falls”, el último disco de Scott Morgan al frente de su proyecto Loscil, una armónica y precisa invocación de la melancolía urbana mediante la versión más depurada, orgánica y sutil de su discurso. Ambient estilizado, apoyado en beats acolchados, algunos arreglos de cuerda y melodías explícitas, que conseguía darle una continuación madura y racional a “Plume”, quién sabe si el cenit creativo del canadiense. Hoy, apenas quince meses después, nos reencontramos con el artista, pero esta vez con una grabación drásticamente distinta a aquella, tanto en planteamiento, objetivo y ejecución. Tan solo un dato para orientarnos: “Coast/ Range/ Arc”, su nuevo álbum, está editado por el sello italiano Glacial Movements, uno de los refugios más sólidos e intachables del ambient aislacionista más puro y radical del momento. Línea dura.

Con esta carta de presentación, así como con una portada que señala con mucha claridad por dónde van los tiros, el disco ya desde el inicio deja claro que en este viaje por las montañas del noroeste del Pacífico, un paisaje solitario poblado de glaciares, cascadas, valles, laderas, lagos helados y vistas monumentales en frontal divergencia con el mundanal ruido de las grandes ciudades, no hay lugar para los ritmos, las melodías, los instrumentos o los arreglos. Aquí asistimos, en realidad, a una nueva sesión de hipnosis ambient en la que las grabaciones de campo y los drones minimalistas llevan la voz cantante, todo planteado desde un prisma de abstracción y pureza dignas de mención y aplauso. Si uno llega a imaginarse a sí mismo deambulando por la inmensidad de un glaciar, es improbable pensar en una banda sonora más certera, exigente y fiel que la que propone Morgan en este disco.

Cincuenta y cinco minutos para olvidarse del mundo, odisea introspectiva en luminoso y cegador blanco, apología furibunda de la soledad y el recogimiento, “Coast/ Range/ Arc” es un álbum hecho a medida para los talibanes del ambient y el aislacionismo. De impecable y bellísima factura, encuentra su razón de ser en la invocación paisajística y en la introspección emocional del oyente, se mantiene muy fiel a la idiosincrasia del sello, conserva los rasgos expresivos del Loscil más asceta y devuelve crédito y consistencia a una microescena últimamente superada por otras apuestas más versátiles y epidérmicas del circuito ambient. - Julio Pardo


Six Review

ROCKERILLA (Summer 2011)

Seven Review

Though Scott Morgan has issued much of his Loscil material on the Chicago-based kranky label, Glacial Movements would seem to be a much more natural home for the electronic composer. Both the artist and label, in this case, favour restraint over excess in their productions and both bring a real-world or environmental dimension to their works (Submers perhaps the clearest example in Loscil's case, given that all nine of its tracks are named after submarines). At the very least, the change of label locale has witnessed a notable change in the Loscil sound, with Morgan scaling his approach back even further beyond its normally understated presentation to a style that invites even more of an isolationist ambient characterization. On Coast/Range/Arc, beats are absent altogether in a collection that sees its six settings stripped down to their elemental essence. The pieces are long-form in design, with three tipping past the ten-minute mark, and are ideally experienced as headphones listening material.
The material takes its inspiration from the coastal mountains of the Pacific Northwest (a region no doubt familiar to the Vancouver, BC-based Morgan), whose grandeur is bolstered by the presence of glaciers, lakes, waterfalls, and canyons. It's not hard to hear a parallel between the slow-motion developments within Morgan's pieces and the shifts that occur imperceptibly in natural phenomena. Along those lines, the opener “Black Tusk” swells gradually into an immense drone of subtly modulating character that's grounded by uninterrupted swathes of organ-like flow and smothered in enigmatic textures of flutter, ripple, and static. Its huge blocks of sound are hardly unchanging, however; close listening reveals, for example, the subliminal presence of a faint whistling sound that arises during the piece's final moments. In contrast to the monolithic aura of the opening piece, “Fromme” frames ambient washes and a chugging synth pattern with the animated burble of water. Morgan drapes synthetic string tones across “Stave Peak” in sparse manner, with ambient breaths audible in the spaces separating the strings. Unlike the warmth exuded by the strings in “Stave Peak,” “Névé” paints a more threatening picture, with the faint wailing of a choir seemingly audible at the center of the cavernous vortex sculpted by Morgan. That human element may be the imagined outgrowth of a hallucination but the track's mystery-laden material is tailor-made for engendering such flights of fancy. “Brohm Ridge” comes across like the relatively peaceful aftermath of the threat posed by “Névé,” even if the sheets of black ice and dark, muffled tones that ebb and flow throughout “Brohm Ridge” ooze a particular menace of their own. The muffled horn tones extending through “Goat Mountain” suggest the grandiose vistas of Wagner or Richard Strauss (the latter's Eine Alpensinfonie [An Alpine Symphony], for example). Each of Coast/Range/Arc's settings creates the impression of having been born in a different geographical place with different natural elements—ice, wind, water, for instance—consecutive points of emphasis, and in terms of compositional development, the tracks are some of the most epic Morgan has released. Among other things, he draws the listener's attention to the myriad array of impressions we experience in our encounters with the natural world, with everything from awe and rapture to terror part of the kaleidoscopic mix.
August 2011


Eight Review


Loscil have been mainstays of the ambient scene for some time, recording both with Kranky and Ghostly International. Here they (I often say they but it's actually a 'he', Scott Morgan) produce a new work for Glacial Movements based upon the coastal mountains of the Pacific Northwest, studded with glaciers, lakes and other natural beauty. Oh, how I would like to visit. Anyway these are remarkably tranquil pieces, instantly achieving a peaceful state of mind that immediately takes me away from the hustle-bustle of your modern day online record store and into a rural dream world. The synth sounds are beautifully soft, like being whisked off into a cloud and I love the subtle touches that pervade the work. Little hints of sub bass that creep into the mix, keeping the sound on the right side of the new age disaster line. Phil is reminded of very early Orb (without the ephemera), I'm reminded of a less organic Stars of the Lid and some of the sounds heard on the impressive recent work of bvdub. This is even more minimal than Loscils's previous work. There are no beats, no clutter, just simple beautiful drone with string (or synth string) one note lines overlaid. It's incredibly patient, incredibly precise celestial music. You need to let it build, envelop you and you will reap the rewards. The nice low end chatter occasionally glimpsed under the mix gives a slight dub techno feel to some of the tracks particularly 'Neve' which is darker with Gas-like drones but overall this is fine ambient music for late night listening pleasure.


Nineth Review

Per la sua decima pubblicazione, la Glacial Movements torna a ospitare un grande nome della musica ambientale, commissionandogli la realizzazione della sua personale interpretazione dell'isolazionismo ghiacciato che costituisce tratto caratterizzante di tutte le pubblicazioni dell'etichetta romana, fondata e curata con autentica passione da Alessandro Tedeschi.
Dopo le esperienze, tra gli altri, di Rapoon e Lull, è adesso la volta del canadese Scott Morgan aka Loscil, che dopo le piogge incessanti che ne hanno ispirato l'ultimo, splendido, "Endless Falls", non si è discostato più di tanto dall'osservazione della natura circostante alla sua Vancouver, addentrandosi nell'impervia zona costiera del Pacific North-West, costellata da laghi, cascate e canyon, creati e modellati dal ghiaccio, alla ricerca di suoni e suggestioni adeguate al concept tematico, oggetto dell'esplorazione sonora di tutte le uscite del catalogo Glacial Movements.

I cinquantacinque minuti di "Coast/Range/Arc" racchiudono tuttavia una visione in un certo senso "domestica" e più prossima dell'isolazionismo ambientale, che rende emblematico come per trovare le espressioni più aliene e selvagge della natura non sia necessario recarsi in distanti luoghi inospitali, poiché in alcune zone del pianeta scenari mozzafiato e ghiacci perenni possono trovarsi anche a breve distanza da metropoli moderne.
Il forte legame geografico di "Coast/Range/Arc" viene tuttavia tradotto in scenari ai quali la presenza dell'elemento umano è quasi estranea, certamente superflua di fronte alla maestosità dei luoghi e a immagini cristallizzate in una quiete ibernata ma, al solito, vitalissima.

Accantonate per l'occasione le cadenze dub e le pulsazioni elettroniche di "Endless Falls", Morgan disegna sei sinfonie ambientali, modulate sul crinale tra iterazione e persistenza, senza tuttavia rinunciare ad abbracci armonici dalle sembianze quasi orchestrali, né alle vibrazioni sfrigolanti che catturano l'incessante processo di fenditura, diluizione e rigenerazione del ghiaccio. A quest'ultima categoria di suoni è improntata l'iniziale "Black Tusk", la cui coltre ipnotica si svolge uniforme su un substrato più ruvido, puntellato da soffi al tempo stesso tenebrosi ed eterei.
L'ispessimento quasi "fisico" che contrassegna la prima parte del lavoro si percepisce anche nella varietà di riflessi liquidi di "Fromme", mentre i due brani centrali si sciolgono in più brevi partiture, che, tra echi profondi e saturazioni austere, innalzano cattedrali di suono ibernato, statico ma pronto a dileguarsi in vaporose astrazioni.
I due più lunghi brani finali (entrambi oltre i dieci minuti di durata) traducono invece tale impalpabile orchestralità in trame sonore granulose, le cui increspature e correnti spettrali fungono da corollario a una grandiosità documentarista, non priva di una certa persistente tensione di fondo.

Ben congegnato e altrettanto accuratamente realizzato, "Coast/Range/Arc" lascia riaffiorare le profondità ambientali già espresse da Scott Morgan in album quali "Submers" e "Plume", confermando al contempo il graduale processo di affrancamento delle produzioni Glacial Movements dai plumbei cliché espressivi spesso connaturati alla declinazione isolazionista della musica ambientale.
Ancora una volta, sotto l'apparente immobilità delle superfici ghiacciate, ci sono vita, suono e movimento; Morgan li ha colti, restituendoli condensati in un universo sonoro in fragile ma perfetto equilibrio.


Tenth Review

Although seemingly operating somewhat below the radar in terms of release frequency, Glacial  Movements   has earned their status when it comes to quality standards.
In the past, they released albums by Rapoon, Lull, BVDUB, Francisco Lopez (among others) - the future will see new releases by BVDUB. Pjusk and Thomas Köner.

Like the name suggests, Glacial  Movements  chooses to release albums that thematically deal with vast, deserted (and mostly cold) landscapes:
"Places that man has forgotten...icy landscapes...fields of flowers covered eternally with ice... Icebergs colliding amongst themselves..." "Glacial Movements is a label born to describe and spread these thoughts/images through sound."

Knowing this, it is no surprise that Glacial  Movements is the label to release Loscil's latest release,  "Coast/Range/Arc ". It is a perfect match.

In previous releases (most of them released on Kranky ), Canadian composer Scott 'Loscil' Morgan has proven to be able to transfer desolate territories into haunting soundscapes. His ability "to write environmental weavings which revolve around a well-defined subject" has made him one of the most important performers in what could be called 'environmental isolationist ambient'.

"Coast/Range/Arc " refers to the coastal mountains of the Pacific Northwest , studded with glaciers, lakes, waterfalls, canyons and epic views.

"Mountains are hardly static - in fact they are dynamic on a time scale beyond the human experience.  They grow, buckle, twist, erupt and erode at an epic pace. The Coast Range Arc is filled with such mountains and valleys, their dynamics nearly imperceptible. They evoke awe and a connection to an imperceptible past. They are constantly changing, yet represent such a seemingly stoic fixture in our relatively short lives."
A beautiful description indeed, and one that fits the mountains as well as the seemingly stoic music on this album, which progresses with nature's inevitability.  

That inevitabilty may be threatening at times, but it is also comforting, since it's the way nature's supposed to be - and way beyond human control.
In that way I always find it remarkable that this kind of music is mostly described in terms like 'desolate' and  'cold' - while for me it also transcends calm and timeless peacefulness


Eleventh Review

Canadian composer Scott Morgan has over a decade of operations situated loscil as a leading name in ambient electronica. Over the course of several works, he's found synergies between melody, motion and mood, operating at a dub-inflected remove. A thematic constant has been environmental, from Triple Point's thermodynamic principles to Submers's submariner big blue. Following on, First Narrows was similarly water-borne but more instrumentally opened out, Plume used the expanded palette to foreground other timbres and touch on more ambivalent terrain, while rain seeped through the whole of Endless Falls (2010). This album takes its expressive cue from the coastal mountains of the Pacific Northwest.

This aspect of the artist is a perfect fit with the Glacial Movements theme of glacial expanse and isolationist inclination. Glaciers, lakes, waterfalls, widescreen blue vistas, timeless elevations and boundless skies are easily evoked by Morgan's signature stretches of hazy ambience. Rather than a continuation of the ebb-flow ambient electronica of Endless Falls, coast/range/arc eschews clipped rhythms and bass pulse in favour of tempo-depleted soundscapes. “black tusk” sonographically travels through 10 minutes of such backdrops, ending with what sounds an imitation of cold Pacific winds. Tracks such as “fromme” and “stave peak” are gorgeous tranquil zones of lone drone tone, while the standout “névé” basks darkly in a bleak and isolated mood. A meditative calm prevails, but, like Thomas Köner (see last October's fn), Morgan conveys a metaphysical sense of some ineffable mysterious presence within the ice and frozen tundra. With the passage through, the mood darkens considerably, building into a thicker layer of tonemass - barren and unyielding. Morgan ramps up the theme of mystery and awe with more ominous drone paths over “Brohm Ridge” and “Goat Mountain,” the listener loomed over by a full evocation of a towering ice-bound mountain range.


Twelve Review

Moins de confort, moins de plume, moins que zéro ? Une image suffit à capturer le paradoxe de l’isolement et des grands espaces. De fait, le nouvel album de Loscil semble avoir perdu le fil de l’horizon. A l’image des productions de Thomas Köner, le travail du Canadien Scott Morgan se prend ici au jeu de l’expédition glaciaire, soulignant ici et là les forces de la nature dans ce qu’elle ont de plus inquiétantes, originelles et pures. Ainsi donc, le temps de la civilisation s’arrête-t-il au pied des lacs et des montagnes du grand Nord. Coast / Range / Arc est autant un disque concept qu’une excursion totale - sans écharpe, sans gants, sans bonnet. Field recordings et synthétiseurs y dévoilent une série de drones en formation. Musique mystère Freeze, plus que jamais en phase avec les préoccupations environnementales du label Glacial Movements. Brusque chute de température. Etoiles des neiges, crevasses et manteaux blancs. Il souffle dans un premier temps comme un vent nouveau, nature et sauvage. De fait, jamais la musique de Loscil n’aura paru si peu chaleureuse et sophistiquée. Rien de fondamentalement bouleversant pour autant, si ce n’est une belle maîtrise du mouvement, de l’eau qui dort, se réveille puis s’endort de nouveau dans un océan de glace.


Thirteen Review


Glacial Movements est un label dont la thématique est de proposer des disques inspirés par des territoires inaltérés voire austères à toute forme de vie humaine. Et froids, surtout.Scott Morgan, résidant à Vancouver (où justement on doit bien se les geler je pense) et immense créateur d’ambiances sonores contemplatives s’est imprégné du concept et ne pouvait pas mieux l’illustrer. Coast / Range / Arc voit Loscil renouer avec les drones dans leur expression la plus minimaliste qui soit.La désolation des espaces glacés qu’il retranscrit dans cet album est particulièrement touchante. Le charme aérien de Black Tusk et Fromme, les 2 morceaux d’ouverture, se transforme au fil des 4 compositions suivantes en une profonde et sombre contemplation méditative.


Fourteen Review


With a lengthy discography of albums on labels such as Kranky and Ghostly International, it's no surprise that Scott Morgan's newest album is a piece of majestic ambient beauty.  The cover art is also a perfect image for the disc, a vista that is gorgeous yet frigid, just like the sound contained within.

Across six tracks Morgan cultivates a pretty consistent sound, meshing sparse, pure droning passages with varying dynamics and compositional structures.  The opening "Black Tusk," for example, is heavily focused on deep, spacious tones that seemingly stretch out forever. The slow changes and undulations are balanced by subtle sheets of static that continue throughout, like cold winds kicking up snow and blowing it about.

Instead of static, recordings of rushing water are paired with thick tones on "Fromme," mixing the heavy, monolithic textures with purely natural sounds before both cease, allowing in a tremolo-laden passage of sound and deep heavy sub-bass pulses that shake everything around.

The remaining pieces focus more on the textural passages and dense tones and less on the noisier elements heard on "Black Tusk."  The constantly shifting structure of "Stave Peak"  is initially a series of swelling tones, almost like trumpets producing the outbursts.  As the track goes on, the loud parts get louder and heavier, and the quiet parts no longer become as quiet, slowly building into a thick roar.

"Névé" and "Brohm Ridge" feature prominent bell-like tones, stretched out to become soaring passages of echoes and reverberations.  The former conjures images of a winter's night, cold and becoming colder, the layers becoming more pronounced and forceful into almost a menacing intensity.  The latter carefully ebbs and flows, shifting from sparse tones to dramatic outbursts with a cinematic flair, consistently balancing big flourishes with delicate moments.

Each composition on Coast/Range/Arc has its own distinctive presence, but all fit nicely together in an icy, yet compelling work.  While there isn't a lot of warmth to be had here, the spacious drones and massive, heavy layers of sound still make it quite an inviting work.


Fifteen Review

Stavolta tocca al canadese Scott Morgan, nei panni del suo progetto principale Loscil, cimentarsi con le tematiche ipotermico-naturalistiche della nostrana Glacial Movements, etichetta che ha ormai raggiunto un'importanza internazionale di primo livello. Già abituato a musicare tematiche legate ad eventi naturali, Scott mostra tutte le sue qualità compositive in questo album, ispirato dai panorami delle catene montuose che si ergono lungo la costa ovest del Canada, zona segnata dalle necessarie temperature basse, ma anche da una singolare varietà morfologica. "Coast/Range/Arc" è la colonna sonora di tali lande, strutturata attraverso sei compatti brani, sempre uniformemente gelidi, fatti di cambiamenti lenti, e basati su drones, temi di sintetizzatori e qualche impercettibile rumore. Le linee sonore stratificate assumono spesso le sembianze di venti para-melodici che battono il territorio, oppure di onde in pacato movimento. I toni sfociano a volte in un'intensità quasi sinfonica, che si sforza - con grandi risultati - di celebrare una maestosità che l'ascoltatore può solo immaginare. Grazie ai suoni sembrano infatti prendere vita i sussurri di quella natura che da sempre la label di Alessandro Tedeschi ha cercato di fotografare come immanente ed eterna, e che Morgan interpreta in modo eccellente, lasciandosi (e lasciandoci) trasportare in uno status superiore. È ormai normale fare riferimento alla Glacial Movements se si vuole ascoltare un album ambient dai toni freddi ed intimisti: Loscil ci consegna uno dei capitoli migliori, confermando la sua grande capacità di dipingere orizzonti sterminati con il solo ausilio sonoro. Imperdibile per chi ama questo genere. Michele Viali


Sixteen Review

Scott Morgan’s latest release contains no surprises if you’ve heard any previous material but is peculiarly compelling, if only for how “large” he manages to make everything sound. Considering the impetus for this recording,  the mountains and coasts of the Pacific NorthWest, that’s then no real surprise either, but it is to his credit that he translates their immensity into dronesoundscapes of an intensity that few others can match. 

“Brohm Ridge” is the best of the six tracks on offer, changing regularly in an almost atomized manner during its 11 minute length and by the time they’ve travelled through it, the listener is somewhere completely different. Despite none of the other tracks really being a great deal different in style, there’s enough here to satisfy any fan of both Morgan’s and the genre itself. If you can put aside any pre-baked assumptions about the relative lack of ambition in ambient music today, then this is as good as you’ll hear in 2011. - Toby Frith


Seventeen Review

Na 5 releases op Kranky komt loscil nu met zijn nieuwste werk op het Glacial Movements label, dat zich richt op glaciale en isolationistische ambient. En daar past de nieuwe cd van loscil-man Scott Morgan helemaal tussen. Minder neoklassiek dan voorheen en meer duistere klanklandschappen vol drones. Mysterieuze en vooral duistere pracht, maar niet per se een stap voorwaarts sinds zijn vorige werk. Maar er valt genoeg te genieten, dus mij hoor je verder niet klagen.


Eighteen Review

Loscil is the project of the prolific Scott Morgan, who resides in Canada and has released a total of 8 albums so far (not counting the “Versions” EP and a net release of four tracks). Tracks of his have appeared in documentaries, as well as the computer game Osmos. An interesting detail is that the name Loscil is an abbreviation for “looping oscillator”, a function of the audio programming language Csound – this is where my diatribe in computer programming sadly stumbles in the harsh reality of my ignorance, and the trail grows cold – those who wish to follow it further must do it alone. Scott’s first label release, “Triple Point” (2001) on the experimental label Kranky, was the beginning of his focus on concept albums, mainly music that constitutes a continuous entity, revolving around a particular subject. “Triple Point” was based on thermodynamic principles, “Submers” is a collection of tracks each representing a historic submarine, while “First Narrows” is based on Vancouver’s Lions Gate Bridge, particularly “the first gap to the entrance of the Burrard Inlet ”, quoting from the Kranky website.

“Coast Range Arc” is released on the wonderfully tasteful Glacial Movements label, which has accustomed us to exceptional minimal releases. Its perspective is founded in the natural landscape of the coastal mountains of the Pacific Northwest, “studded with glaciers, lakes, waterfalls, canyons and epic views. The majestic ranges form a striking mountain landscape. These tracks explore the timelessness of mountainous elevations; oxygen deprived and surrounded by boundless skies. Mountains are hardly static – in fact they are dynamic on a time scale beyond the human experience. They grow, buckle, twist, erupt and erode at an epic pace. The Coast Range Arc is filled with such mountains and valleys, their dynamics nearly imperceptible. They evoke awe and a connection to an imperceptible past. They are constantly changing, yet represent such a seemingly stoic fixture in our relatively short lives”. The idea and atmosphere fit perfectly in the label known for its cold ambient releases.

Each track bears the name of a specific mountain, ridge or area, and is studied to convey not just its character, but participation in the event itself. When you close your eyes and lose yourself to the music, you can actually feel the cold winds whispering in your ear, and hear your footsteps in the snow. The suggestion of the fluidity of the landscape’s dynamics given in the description above, as well as the difference of the effects of time on humans and on nature, is evident. Everything flows, nothing is constant. Yet for a being with such a short life-span as ours, nature appears constant and unchangeable. Contact with this majestic outpost forces us to come to terms with our finite existence, but also provides us with the opportunity to disconnect from everyday trivialities and tune in to a different wavelength. To become one with nature and immerse ourselves in the freshness, the clearness and brilliance of the ice, snow and flowing streams.

This is pure, cold ambient at its best. The tracks range from low-key drones to the sound of running waters in my favourite track of the album, “Fromme”, to mellow synth ambient, resounding high-pitched drones and menacing cold ambient atmospheres. Faithful to the aesthetics of an abstract minimalism, Loscil never fails to maintain the temperature, vibe and imagery of the landscape. The final track, “Goat Mountain” transmits a sense of attainment and inner peace, the adventure having finally been completed. Rhythmic drones announce the ritual of the unison of the human with the divine. As it is impossible to separate one part of this experience from the other, if you had actually climbed these mountains, so it is impossible to deal with the tracks of this album separately. One cannot exist without the others, ripped apart from the general concept. I will differ from a reviewer I read in the label’s website and say that this album can be enjoyed not only on headphones but also played in your stereo system, as the music fills the space with its lucid, bright, icy ambience. It is also excellent meditation music. Whichever method you choose you are sure to be affected by it, and to end up being grateful for the ride.


Nineteen Review

No, you aren’t looking at a mislabeled John Luther Adams compilation. Loscil, the ambient/drone project of Vancouver’s Scott Morgan, has long aimed for unity between music and artwork. Plume (2006) opened with an image of an isolated smokestack, and through a series of winding, pulsing pieces evoked the concepts that arise when viewing industry from a distance: a stark mindset somewhere between alienation and boundless yearning. Submers, four years Plume‘s prior, followed a similar pattern, with music and artwork both centered around a nautical theme. And here, for coast/range/arc, the artwork features an endless winter landscape, with several of the seven pieces named for locations in British Columbia.

What Morgan is after here is something much more restrained than on Loscil’s previous full-length, 2010’s Endless Falls. That album had an intimate scope, but also tweaked Morgan’s formula somewhat, not to mention a guest appearance from Dan Bejar. (Morgan has been known to play drums in Destroyer ) Here, there’s a steadiness, a greater reliance upon drones and evocation of the vastness of the spaces he’s invoking. It’s not just the cover artwork that suggests Adams’s body of work, after all.

“Stave Peak” has a minimalist’s bliss that recalls the Bang on a Can Ensemble’s recording of Music For Airports, while the climax of “Fromme” practically shimmers. These seven pieces, however, take some time to unfold; “Stave Peak,” at six and a half minutes, is the shortest. And while there’s nothing inherently wrong with developing music subtly, several of the pieces run dangerously close to passing by the listener without ever grabbing their attention.

Not all of them, however. “Névé” hearkens back to the sound of Plume, with just a hint of static glitchery in the mix and a haunting suggestion of a melody. If Loscil is invoking a landscape here, it’s a particularly cold one (The title refers to a particular type of snow.) And the sonorous drone of “Goat Mountain” is entirely massive, a booming suggestion of something massive. For the 10 and a half minutes of its duration, it suggests a middle ground between Christian Fennesz and Sunn 0))) -- and represents a solid and compelling expansion of Loscil’s sound. - By Tobias Carroll


Twenty Review

L’étiquette Glacial Movements fait dans la musique ambiante isolationniste. Donc, aucune surprise à voir le Canadian Scott Morgan (Loscil) y publier un disque. Et aucune surprise à constater qu’il s’agit d’une œuvre particulièrement dénudée et froide. Plutôt insubstantielle aussi. En fait, là où Netherworld réussissait à habiter l’univers désertique qu’il dépeignait (voir l’entrée du 2011-07-19/20), Loscil propose un tableau beaucoup plus statique, voire inhabité. Moins satisfaisant.
The Glacial Movements label focuses on isolationist ambient music. So, there’s no surprise seeing Canadian Scott Morgan (Loscil) release a CD on it. And no surprise finding out that it is a work particularly stripped down and cold. Rather insubstantial too. Actually, where Netherworld managed to inhabit the deserted landscape he painted (see the diary entry for 2011-07-19/20), Loscil’s muic is much more static, inhabited even. Less satisfying


Twenty-one Review

Rapoon, Lull, Francisco Lopez e ora Loscil: ancora una volta Alessandro Tedeschi, l'uomo dietro a Glacial Movements, ha convinto un pezzetto di storia dell'ambient a sposare il proprio suono con l'immaginario statico e bianco della sua etichetta.Scott Morgan/Loscil, da Vancouver, è una firma della Kranky di Chicago, oltre che il batterista dei Destroyer di Dan Bejar. Coast/range/arc prende le mosse dal paesaggio maestoso che Scott Morgan può osservare nel suo paese, fatto di montagne lungo la costa, laghi e fiordi: la prima traccia, ad esempio, prende il nome dal vulcano spento che lì si trova, il Black Tusk (come la band su Relapse, sì, ma c’era prima lui). Rispetto al predecessore Endless Falls le differenze sono nette, perché le pulsazioni di basso sono quasi del tutto assenti, dato che o si fanno drone o divengono isolati momenti in cui sulla superficie tranquilla della musica si forma una piccola onda. Questo non vuol dire che coast/range/arc sia monotono, dato che Scott è stato capace creare situazione diverse per ogni traccia: ci sono le atmosfere roach-iane in “Black Tusk”, gli strumenti ad arco come sorgente sonora da plasmare in una commovente “Stave Peak”, il dark ambient di “Névé” e la soundtrack per un thriller soprannaturale in “Brohm Ridge”.
Senza accezioni negative: un buon lavoro di genere.


Twenty-two Review

Although seemingly operating somewhat below the radar in terms of release frequency, Glacial Movements has earned its status when it comes to quality standards. In the past, the Italian ambient label founded by Alessandro Tedeschi (aka Netherworld), released albums by Rapoon, Lull, bvdub, Francisco López, and many others. The future will see new releases by bvdub, Pjusk and Thomas Köner. Like the name suggests, Glacial Movements selects albums that thematically deal with vast, deserted (and mostly cold) landscapes: “Places that man has forgotten… icy landscapes… fields of flowers covered eternally with ice… Icebergs colliding amongst themselves… [...] Glacial Movements is a label born to describe and spread these thoughts/images through sound.” Knowing this, it is no surprise that Glacial Movements is the label to release Loscil‘s latest album, Coast/ Range/ Arc. It is a perfect match.

In previous releases (most of them on Kranky), Canadian composer Scott Morgan has proven to be able to transfer desolate territories into haunting soundscapes. His ability “to write environmental weavings which revolve around a well-defined subject” has made him one of the most important performers in what could be called ‘environmental isolationist ambient’. “Coast/ Range/ Arc ” refers to the coastal mountains of the Pacific Northwest, studded with glaciers, lakes, waterfalls, canyons and epic views.

“Mountains are hardly static – in fact they are dynamic on a time scale beyond the human experience. They grow, buckle, twist, erupt and erode at an epic pace. The ‘Coast/ Range/ Arc‘ is filled with such mountains and valleys, their dynamics nearly imperceptible. They evoke awe and a connection to an imperceptible past. They are constantly changing, yet represent such a seemingly stoic fixture in our relatively short lives.”

A beautiful description indeed, and one that fits the mountains as well as the seemingly stoic music on this album, which progresses with nature’s inevitability. That inevitability may be threatening at times, but it is also comforting, since it’s the way nature’s supposed to be – and way beyond human control. In that way I always find it remarkable that this kind of music is mostly described in terms like ‘desolate’ and ‘cold’ – while for me it also transcends calm and timeless peacefulness.


Twenty-three Review

Tipicità in casa Glacial Movements vuol dire compattezza intorno ad un tema che nello specifico è l’‘Artico, i mille colori rifratti del permafrost, delle montagne di ghiaccio, apparentemente bianche; un candore fatto di piccole rifrazioni della luce che se abbagliata dal sole acceca come un’‘immagine sacra.
Non è blasfemo associare al ghiaccio una divinità algida, pura come la coltre quindi feroce nel negare alternative di sopravvivenza.
L’‘Artico è il viaggio quasi per eccellenza: un’‘ideale classifica vedrebbe Napapiri tra le prime posizioni del viaggio ideale, perché?
Perché estremo e non solo nelle temperature, nell’‘abbaglio luminoso, nella pericolosità intrinseca; sommo nel fondere l’‘io cosciente con l’‘io trascendente, la solitudine che diventa meditazione ed il raccoglimento, quasi sempre,porta verso gli Dei perché l’‘Artico in solitudine come nell’‘Oceano da la medesima sensazione all’‘uomo di essere una minuscola, insignificante particella nel contesto globale.
Però l’‘uomo ragiona e si offre agli Dei, a Dio, per divenire un tramite, anche componendo la musica: ora è il turno del canadese Loscil e delle sue tracce dedicate al grande Nord. Una carriera iniziata nel 1999 da parte di Scott Morgan, che oggi, nella sua ricerca, si incontra con i temi di Glacial Movement, li mette a disposizione di chi voglia identificare un percorso comune e condividerne le aspettative, le immutabili, eterne, stupefacenti e candidi incanti apparentemente puerili.Sei tracce dedicate al grande Nord ma quale? Quello che guarda verso lo stretto di Bering ma non come ponte culturale ma come tramite per l’‘isolazionismo meditativo da cui far nascere il suono: “Black Tusk” è l’‘inizio cupo e statico di un album che in questa veste si chiude con “Goat Mountain”.In mezzo c’‘è la distesa di neve irrorata dallo scrosciare squillante dell’‘acqua in “Fromme”, un disgelo segnato da vibrazioni, ondulazioni sonore, una tela ora increspata dal Grande Artista celeste. Il momento emotivamente più eccelso è subito prima del finale: “Brohm Ridge” ha il sentore di un organo, una sonorità ora di ambient mistico, un omaggio agli Dei adorati tra i ghiacci, agli Asi come alle potenze divine Inuit, su tutte Sena cui omaggiare una preda prima della morte.
Il brano innalza il suono fino alle cupole di cristallo, poi tornerà la stasi, la stratificazione del suono, ma ora l’‘oblio deve cessare anche solo per un istante, il tempo di una traccia sonora scritta per evocare, invocare, ammirati.
E’ credibile Loscil nel creare un suono per quella terra, la sua, Glacial Movement procede nella sua logica tematica anche nella cover di nuovo del grande fotografo nordico Bjarne Riesto, una label compatta come il ghiaccio, lucente come la neve, non così fredda però…


Twenty-four Review


Twenty-five Review

Loscil has completed his next full-length, entitled Coast/Arc/Range.

Known to his friends as Scott Morgan, Loscil specializes in electronic ambient music with a touch of melancholy, a style he's developed on records for Kranky and Ghostly International among others. Several of the Canadian artist's releases so far have been strictly topical, such as 2002's Submers, on which every track was named after a famous submarine. His next one takes inspiration from the Coast Arc Range, a "volcanic arc system" that stretches from Washington state through British Colombia. It's a theme that's well suited to Glacial Movements Records, a geology-obsessed Italian label whose past releases include Bvdub's latest album, The Art of Dying Alone.


Twenty-six Review

Following the release of last year's Endless Falls LP, Canadian ambient composer Scott Morgan (a.k.a. Loscil) has prepped his seventh full-length, a six-track record called Coast/Range/Arc. The album will drop next month via Glacial Movements, and is said to be "centered around the coastal mountains of the Pacific Northwest, studded with glaciers, lakes, waterfalls, canyons, and epic views." Before it's available, you can check out the artwork and tracklist for Loscil's Coast/Range/Arc below


Twenty-seven Review

By Josiah Hughes
Vancouver-based ambient drone master Scott Morgan has become a leading name in his niche thanks to the quality work he puts forth as Loscil. Last year, Morgan ended a four-year break between albums with the release of Endless Falls. Rather than wait another half-decade for new material, however, Loscil will follow that up with a new release later this year.

The album is called Coast/Range/Arc and is the seventh Loscil album in total. A press release explains that the record is "centered around the coastal mountains of the Pacific Northwest, studded with glaciers, lakes, waterfalls, canyons, and epic views."

While Glacial Movements lists April 2011 as the release date, XLR8R reports that the album is likely due out in May as a CD digipak. In the meantime, you can grab downloads of three album tracks, here.


Twenty-eight Review

Gently opening with a slow fade is ‘Black Tusk’, and from the outset, Loscil (Scott Morgan) lays his intentions out on the table for all to see. This edition is focused on the coastal mountains of the North American pacific north-west, a region of inspiration for countless artists, namely David Lynch and his Twin Peaks, more recently Rafael Anton Irisarri on his superb ‘The North Bend’. Most works inspired by the region have the same feel about them: a slow moving majestic unfolding of time, sometime gloomy, but always beautiful

Morgan is a composer of patience, allowing each piece to evolve on it’s own, all at almost glacial place. Aforementioned 10 minute opener ‘Black Tusk’ is clear evidence of this. Enormous synth pads roll slower than clouds, but in the same way, billowing, swelling, dropping. A muted flow of water, perhaps a melting glacier, runs through ‘Fromme’, as bass drops pervade quietly in the background, a 4/4 beat at 6bpm. Fan like synths blow across the surface. ‘Stave Peak’ is as majestic as the name implies. Reverential tones echo out into silence, evoking huge spaces, as other synths gradually build and fall underneath. This is like flying over a spectacular mountain vista, and easily creates this picture in your mind. ‘Neve’ is all ominous notes and atmospheres, calling to mind chasms and dark forgotten valleys. ‘Brohm Ridge’ is truly a journey, starting in the sun on the spine of a ridge, before slowly slipping off the side over a cliff to a dark valley, before perilously climbing out to the summit. Closer ‘Goat Mountain’ is a muted organ vista, standing at the foot of a fog enshrouded mountain and staring in awe for 10:31.

For music that moves at such a pace, it is somehow still very compelling, owing largely to your own imagination. Truly a work of stasis, and a masterwork of disciplined patience. To hell with grass: listening to this album is akin to watching mountains grow. Epic stuff.

Nick Giles

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Twenty-nine Review


Thirty Review


Tra le diverse produzioni dell'etichetta di Alessandro Tedeschi, è questa la volta del compositore canadese Scott Morgan alias Loscil, sulla scena dal 1999 con il progetto di debutto "A New Demonstration of Thermodynamic Tendencies" per l'etichetta americana Kranky.
Oggi Loscil, reduce dal successo di "Endless Falls", rimane ancorato all'onda di un puro sound drone/minimal ambient, alla ricerca di spazi inesplorati e del linguaggio della natura, del resto come tutte le produzioni della Glacial Movements.
In "Coast/Range/Arc", infatti, ci addentriamo in una foresta sonora in cui vivono luoghi e scenari incontaminati, l'esplorazione diviene l'elemento essenziale. I paesaggi della sua terra nativa, come le magiche coste del Pacifico, offrono grande ispirazione ed inevitabilmente ci ritroviamo in un'isolazionismo ambientale e in quei movimenti glaciali propri di tali esperimenti sonori.
E' importante scoprire quella parte di universo a noi sconosciuta.."Coast/Range/Arc" è un buon inizio!


Thirty-one Review



Thirty-two Review

In the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey, the astronauts encounter a cryptic monolith to an ambient score of eerie vocal and instrumental sounds that provoke a feeling of fearful urgency and awe. While that image is your mind, now subtract the voices and the urgency and instead include drones, static, and some natural sounds that last for up to 10 minutes at a time and vary only ever so slightly. You are now listening to Loscil’s Coast/Range/Arc. Loscil albums tend to have themes, and this one is supposed to be “the coastal mountains of the Pacific Northwest.” Well, Loscil’s mastermind, Scott Morgan definitely captured the timelessness and the agonizingly slow evolution of the landscape. It’s almost as if, through his compositions, he’s managed to take time and stretch every second into infinity, turning every breath into a painful wait until the next inhale.

Coast/Range/Arc is dull and difficult to listen to. Minimal, though intricately complex, it is the type of audio art that 98% of the audience won’t understand and 2% will think is brilliant. With constant drones and limited variation, it really only makes sense if you read the description of what you’re supposed to get out of it. Then you will nod and say to your artistic friend, “Yes, I too can see the powdery snow billowing in the wind as it scatters from the mountain top.” It is not relaxing. It’s not inspirational. It’s mostly just very, very slow.

Morgan’s motivation for the latest Loscil album was the infinitely patient and ageless mountains. He captured this deliberate pace quite admirably, turning 54 minutes of music into a drone that never ends. If only his audience could have the same sort of fortitude, he’d be a star.


Thirty-three Review

LOSCIL "coast/range/arc" on Exclaim's "Best of 2011 Improv & Avant-Garde year-end list"...

Vancouver-based sound sculptor Scott Morgan doesn't make bad albums. Working as Loscil, he's developed one of the most trusted and consistent names in modern ambient composition. There was a four-year gap between his 2006 effort Plume and 2010's Endless Falls, but rather than let that happen again he quickly returned with Coast/Range/Arc earlier this year. Hardly a throwaway collection, the album stands on its own as one of Loscil's most engaging yet. Inspired by the vast landscapes of the Pacific Northwest, the six-track release is comprised of enormous compositions that slowly breathe in their long playing times. The result is another stunningly engaging batch of material that ebbs and flows, revealing new crevices of sound with each repeated listen. A grandiose statement blanketed in subtlety, Coast/Range/Arc is a quiet winner. - Josiah Hughes


Thirty-four Review

Vím, že poněkud přeháním, avšak hned Coast / range / arc, které nám nabídl Loscil, občanským jménem Scott Morgan, mě v této prognóze spíše utvrzuje. Album jako celek je ještě jednolitější, poklidnější, je to zvonivá, smírem prodchnutá symbióza s krajinou (údajně s rodnou Kanadou), nekoná se tu žádná zvuková vánice, celkově však je to mírnější i smírnější odlika Netherworldu, minimalističtější, repetitivnější. Melancholické, tajemné, až tajuplné nálady propojuje meditativnost, ozvučení vodou dodává přídech věrohodnosti, drónování podtrhuje „imitaci“ chladného Pacifiku. Ambient ve svém klasičtějším vyznění.


Thirty-five Review

Just when coast / range / arc (54'26") seems quite the cooler compared to previous works by loscil, its ambiguous atmospherics give way to a beautiful breathing machine music. For this release Scott Morgan has developed a monumentally scaled ambient style devoid of the recognizable moving parts and mechanically intricate rhythmic cycles heard on many of his earlier albums. Clouds of drones seem to drift in and out of the soundfield, while desolate timbres sigh into existence then recede. Some of the six churning soundworlds on coast / range / arc lead the listener to a lost lower frozen world - complete with snowy static, boreal climate and whistling white noise effects. A few of the others seem mostly pure helium - striking in their austerity. The remaining pieces possess a remarkable and welcome fragility and light. Possibly of a manner more becoming to Minimalists, these compositions build vaguely on consonant harmonies and color amidst a recurring motif. Here the listener may find haven beneath the sonic solace of less forlorn realizations. The music of loscil is meant to interact with the world. Once enough of us have heard this music, and are stimulated by the thoughts arising from its provocations, its current will be felt running throughout modern thought


Thirty-six Review

Loscil é sinonimo di Scott Morgan, autore canadese attivo sin dal 1999 nel campo dell’elettronica ambientale con etichette di settore tra le quali l’americana Kranky, e noto in particolare per la sua bravura nel creare eccezionali sinfonie sintetiche incentrate su di un soggetto tematico ben definito. Naturale è venuta in tal modo la proficua collaborazione con la romana Glacial Movements, label dedita all’esplorazione in suoni dell’universo isolazionista ruotante intorno alla natura più pura ed incontaminata, la natura glaciale ed estrema dei confini del mondo. I 6 lunghi capitoli di “coast/range/arc” vogliono dipingere nelle nostre menti la dura e sublime bellezza delle aree montane costiere dello sconfinato Nord-Ovest canadese, proiettando l’ascoltatore in un viaggio immaginario verso queste propaggini estreme del continente natio di Scott. Dai tappeti sonori di “Black tusk” piuttosto che di “Goat mountain” emerge la fredda staticità dei laghi, dei ghiacciai e degli altipiani di quei luoghi incastonati ai margini del globo, rendendo l’ascolto del disco quanto di più prossimo alla contemplazione di una vivida fotografia grandangolare di uno skyline della Bristish Columbia. Una nuova, immancabile pietra angolare per lo splendido catalogo della label di Alessandro Tedeschi.


Thirty-seven Review

While a majority of Scott Morgan’s material as Loscil has been put out through Kranky, Glacial Movements feels like a most apt home for his latest full length. For a label devoted to glacial/isolationist ambient, Coast/Range/Arc ticks every box – thick chords of electronics are held through the course of entire pieces, while trickles of arctic streams and steady, metronomic bass throbs add just the slightest touches of life and movement in amongst the album’s bleak winter scenes. There’s little here that breaks away from what could be a considered a “typical” electronic ambient sound, but these pieces are nonetheless very provocative; not only is the listener left in awe of the sonic expanses that surround, but they’re also made to feel very alone within them.  -Jack Chuter


Thirty-eight Review

L’inverno è per me la stagione dell’ambient. Le giornate corte e il freddo fanno da cornice ideale ai maestosi landscape sonori che i maestri del genere sfornano in questo periodo.E in questa atmosfera ideale che mi sono lasciato rapire da quest’ultimo lavoro di Loscil. L’artista Canadese è per me uno dei maestri di quell’ambient “classica”, fatta di droni evocativi e potenti in grado di ricreare paesaggi invernali. Foreste innevate. Laghi ghiacciati. Immense distese sferzate da venti polari. Quell’ambient maestosa ma al tempo stesso melodica e lieve diversa da quella spigolosa e tagliente di artisti come Ben Frost o Roly Porter e, in certi lavori, Tim Hecker.Un ambient priva di glitch, caratterizzata da crescendo musicali e droni ampi ed ipnotici che, come un pennello di un pittore paesaggista, evocano vaste distese naturali. Maestosi scenari incontaminati dove la potenza della natura ancora domina e spaventa e la presenza umana è assente.Il disco infatti è un concept commissionato dall’etichetta romana “Glacial Movements” il cui tema è proprio quello di una “glacial and isolationist ambient”. E Loscil in questo dimostra tutta la sua arte. L’enorme capacità di proiettare l’ascoltatore in questi scenari.L’album si apre con la splendida Black Tusk e la sua maestosità spezzata solo da riverberi elettronici che danno l’idea di una landa spazzata da venti gelidi. Un pezzo potente ed in grado di catturare subito l’ascoltatore. Cosi come la successiva Fromme in cui lenti note di basso spezzano il lieve ruomore dello scorrere dell’acqua. Un album intenso, ispirato come pochi ed estremamente lucido nel proiettate l’ascoltatore in luoghi lontani. Un ascolto ideale in queste gelide notti invernali. Lasciatevi prendere per mano da Loscil e portare la dove domina solo il nulla degli elementi. Non ne rimarrete delusi.


Thirty-nine Review

Loscil é sinonimo di Scott Morgan, autore canadese attivo sin dal 1999 nel campo dell’elettronica ambientale con etichette di settore tra le quali l’americana Kranky, e noto in particolare per la sua bravura nel creare eccezionali sinfonie sintetiche incentrate su di un soggetto tematico ben definito. Naturale è venuta in tal modo la proficua collaborazione con la romana Glacial Movements, label dedita all’esplorazione in suoni dell’universo isolazionista ruotante intorno alla natura più pura ed incontaminata, la natura glaciale ed estrema dei confini del mondo. I 6 lunghi capitoli di “coast/range/arc” vogliono dipingere nelle nostre menti la dura e sublime bellezza delle aree montane costiere dello sconfinato Nord-Ovest canadese, proiettando l’ascoltatore in un viaggio immaginario verso queste propaggini estreme del continente natio di Scott. Dai tappeti sonori di “Black tusk” piuttosto che di “Goat mountain” emerge la fredda staticità dei laghi, dei ghiacciai e degli altipiani di quei luoghi incastonati ai margini del globo, rendendo l’ascolto del disco quanto di più prossimo alla contemplazione di una vivida fotografia grandangolare di uno skyline della Bristish Columbia. Una nuova, immancabile pietra angolare per lo splendido catalogo della label di Alessandro Tedeschi.