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Robert Fripp - A Blessing of Tears 1995 Soundscape-Vol 2 - Live in California CD (album) cover


Robert Fripp


Eclectic Prog

4.33 | 31 ratings

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5 stars The second volume of the 1995 series follows a focused tangent that started with 'Elegy' on the previous release, and groups together several of Fripp's live forays out into the deeply contemplative, mournful, and peaceful dimension of Soundscapes. Once again these are performed entirely on guitar through synthesized sounds, with Fripp slowly building the tranquil waves of strings to create sonic environments of great depth. Each piece explores a profound space rich with impressions of gently emerging awareness, questioning, realisation, and acceptance, content which according to the liner notes was catalysed for Fripp by the death of his mother. Of course, these Soundscapes ring out much more universally. The themes are carried by near-meditative pacing, and layers of sound which build with such logic and grace that the 'looped' nature of the music is almost imperceptible. Pieces such as the opener, 'The Cathedral Of Tears', and 'Midnight Blue' also feature faster, fleeting sounds as they become more developed, suggestive of the transcendence and liberation that can come from acknowledging the deepest thoughts and emotions.

'A Blessing Of Tears' is by far the Soundscapes release that is least abrasive to the ears, since not a single track ever breaks the trend of solitude, sadness, grief, or departs into discord, and as such to the casual listener the album can seem one- dimensional. But the focused material and uniform instrumentation belies the unique difficulty in listening to this particular album... trying to attain a level of attention and relaxation where each note can be appreciated, trying to avoid the music just becoming something in the background. Other Soundscapes make their presence felt - with this one, you have to look and feel for it. And it is worth it. I cannot drop even one star just because of the similar atmosphere of each track, because in truth there are countless subtleties and moments within each one that make this an altogether powerful journey - reflective, captivating, and inspiriting.

ThulŽatan | 5/5 |


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