Tim Hecker – Ravedeath, 1972/Harmony in Ultraviolet

Kranky Website

I felt like doing a ‘double post’ this morning and what better artist to do it for than Tim Hecker. I feel that these two albums complement each other extremely well, given their mood, textures and different places they take me. Ravedeath, 1972 is the latest release by Hecker which was recorded in an old Icelandic church using the organ and heavily treated with effects after said recording. The result is a stark contrast between anger and beauty, the traditional walls of sound that Hecker employs are in full force and are as challenging as always – but I feel that these walls are indeed essential as Hecker breaks them down to reveal the beauty in his music. Closing the album with the suite “In the Air” wonderfully surmises his approach and solidifies the release as an incredible ambient journey.

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Harmony in Ultraviolet was released in 2006 but in my opinion is still as fresh and invigorating today. The passages are entrancing at times and scary at other, the track Radio Spiricom is about as harsh as it gets here, and it is not an easy listen, but sitting through it helps make sense out of a record that is hell-bent on challenging your ears and then rewarding them for taking the challenge head on. Don’t pass this record without listening.

Comments
2 Responses to “Tim Hecker – Ravedeath, 1972/Harmony in Ultraviolet”
  1. Scott says:

    I had a problem with Hecker, in that I found his music to be a little sterilized, and his tracks were too short to create a strong sense of immersion for what they were. For some reason this bothered me with Harmony In Ultraviolet but not at all with Ravedeath 1972. It could be that Ravedeath had more of a destructive tone to it (I like the idea that it’s a soundtrack of something beautiful – like a grand piano – smashing to pieces in slow motion), which I think could be largely attributed to Ben Frost’s production and clear influence.

    Or maybe I first heard HiU on a bad day or something, who knows.

    • Alex says:

      I think i prefer Ravedeath for the same reasons you state, there are some brilliant moments on HiU but overall Ravedeath is a much more challenging (yet extremely rewarding) listen.

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