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Le Mur - Silentia Nova CD (album) cover


Le Mur


Psychedelic/Space Rock

3.05 | 3 ratings

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3 stars German band LE MUR was formed back in 2007, and following an initial phase have settled as a three person strong unit, with three albums to their name so far. "Silentia Nova " is the second of those, and was released in 2013 through Tribal Stomp Records.

In this relatively short album, clocking in at just over 40 minutes, Le Mur documents that they are a band with a fairly wide and liberal approach to the music they desire to explore. If anything can truly be described as a red thread throughout then it's the band's tendency to create fairly sparse, minimalistic arrangements where the bass guitar has a central role. In some ways I'd describe Le Mur as a band that probably can be regarded as a contemporary krautrock band, sharing certain similarities with a project like Portishead spin-off Beak.

Following a minimalistic opening track with laid back, minimalistic tendencies featuring a prominent bass, guitar soloing and percussion dominated rhythms, concluding with a spirited run in, and a creation that has more of a space rock feel to it, more similar to the likes of Ozric Tentacles as they might sound if run through a krautrock filter, we get to the clear highlights of this production as far as I'm concerned. A short and concise unnamed track, with a mesmerizing bass line and careful rhythms supporting at first a mournful saxophone motif and then echoing organ in the second half. The elements used here are then explored more in depth on the following piece, De Nacht der Lemuren (Teil II) with a Gothic-tinged dramatic organ added to the brew. While not quite as mesmerizing as the unnamed track that is the lead up, both of these tracks are superior to the rest of the compositions on this album, coming across as creations comparable in sound and approach to Beak's magnificent tracks Wulfistan and Wulfistan II.

The three longer tracks that concludes this production, basically making up the B-side of the vinyl LP edition, are rather different in scope and sound. All of them twist and turn their way around different aspects of psychedelic rock and krautrcok, with vintage stoner rock inspired sequences as the stylistic and thematic red thread. All of them with sequences that are compelling and highly likable, the initial tribal sequences of Sun can be mentioned as a very good example of that, but also with sequences that doesn't manage to inspire all that much for one reason or another. Pleasant and interesting material on many levels, especially if sparse arrangements and psychedelic tinged vintage stoner rock is to your liking, but in sum not really managing to come across as superior creations for me.

All in all "Silentia Nova" comes across as an interesting production, documenting a band with many fine ideas and some novel approaches to their specific take on psychedelic, progressive rock. If you enjoy krautrock explored from a contemporary point of view, vintage stoner rock and psychedelic rock and have a fascination for bands that tend to go for sparse arrangements and more of a minimalistic sound, chances are that you'll find this album to be an interesting one.

Windhawk | 3/5 |


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