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Harold Budd - Robin Guthrie & Harold Budd: After The Night Falls CD (album) cover


Harold Budd


Progressive Electronic

3.02 | 8 ratings

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Prog Reviewer
2 stars Essentially a "part two" of the previous album, but with no new statements to make.

Before the Day Breaks was a decent album that proved that Harold Budd still knew how to create emotionally evocative ambient music, and Robin Guthrie's ethereal guitar tone added a little bit of variety when compared to Budd's back-catalog, even if the individual arrangements and the album as a whole had that stagnant "oh, this sounds like Harold Budd" aura. However, finishing up the first Budd/Guthrie duology (minus the soundtrack work) with After the Night Falls adds absolutely nothing new to their formula.

The mood on this album is slightly less of a gloomy overcast and more of a quiet, contemplative one. Though this is a difference in sound from the previous album, it's not very significant at all -- the compositions, though dreamy and ambient, more or less sound nearly identical to what was done before on Before the Day Breaks.

The drifting keyboards and guitars heavily effected with reverb weaving between dense ambient soundscapes are undoubtedly beautiful, which is an adjective that almost always appropriately describes Harold Budd's music, but there is absolutely nothing engaging about this album at all. So, background music? Yes, but it's not even very interesting in that respect either. Though the compositions on the previous album had some real feeling to them, these compositions never develop within themselves of within the context of the entire album's duration. The previous collaboration between these two musicians had two standout tracks, but I can detect none on this album, and it seems like this duo have finally run out of worthy ideas.

I really wanted to like this album considering that Before the Day Breaks showed some real promise, and the soundtrack to Mysterious Skin released before it showed even more promise. Unfortunately, After the Night Falls shows that promise breaking down and falling away. Following this album, Harold Budd and Robin Guthrie decided to take a break from each other for a few years, which I honestly have to say was probably the right call to make.

colorofmoney91 | 2/5 |


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