Gargle & Bosques de mi Mente - AbsenceI always love to receive a Fluttery Records album to review. I find their quality-control, for the most part, very strong. “Absence” by Gargle & Bosques de mi Mente is their latest offering and a prime example of this attention to detail, following along nicely with what has gone before it.

“Absence” is an utterly fascinating neo-classical piece that incorporates guitars & folk elements to create atmospheres that are new & truly beguiling.

They take, as their base, a neo-classical approach and build upon this foundation with Eastern European folk, post-rock & more avant-garde sounds to make the most magnificent space. The main instrument on display is the piano, which is backed by the delightful strings, synths, melodeon, glockenspiel, field recordings, and even waves of fuzzy electric guitar. Percussion, apart from the glockenspiel & the odd symbol crash, is notably sparse – rather than detract from the soundscapes, this actually enhances them, giving Gargle & Bosques de mi Mente the air of a chamber orchestra for the post-everything age.

This could be the soundtrack to a film, a rather off-beat film but a film nonetheless … a graceful film possibly set in Paris … a film that deserves to be backed by such cinematic beauty.

I would propose that ’cinematic’ is becoming overplayed as a musical description and yet this album has something of the breadth of space & colour of expression necessary to warrant such an explanation, over-used or not.

It does genuinely feel like a soundtrack and I cannot think of a greater compliment. We are living in the days where some soundtrack composers are true boundary-pushers, where new ideas are expressed through their genre of choice. Think of the work of Cliff Martinez, Clint Mansell and even Yann Tiersen‘s soundtrack for “Amélie”, for example. “Absence” by Gargle & Bosques de mi Mente sits proudly with this rather esteemed company.

I found “Absence” truly captivating with the breadth of sound used utterly entrancing.

My only criticism is that the opening track – ‘Bell’ – doesn’t give a true sense of the album as a whole and, as such, doesn’t give an adequate introduction to the release. It is an excellent track, just not an opener … in my view.

Setting this minor criticism aside, “Absence” by Gargle & Bosques de mi Mente is an utter delight and an album I will highly recommend.