Ian Boddy: Tone Science (2016)
Updated: Sep 20
“Ambient progressive EM at its best, Tone Science is this kind of educational album which aims to show all the paranormal capacities of modern EM”
Ian Boddy is among these artists that make no compromises. For them, the art is more important than success. And always, he likes experimenting the genre and the gear which take them out of its comfort zone. TONE SCIENCE is a first solo album since his live one Liverdelphia, some 3 years ago. And like in Liverdelphia, Ian Boddy exploits the dark side of the silence's waves with 5 tones chapters immensely ambiospherical where the science of the tones takes quite a whole another dimension... Fascinated by sounds and by the slow movements of the nature which decorate our panoramas and our vision, Ian Boddy thus undertakes an audacious sound journey which takes exactly the shape of these floating forms. To do it, the English synth magician digs the capacities of his analog equipment, giving an unequalled wealth to a sea of sounds which move with the bewitchments of its peaceful slowness. You won't dance here, neither you won't dream. But you will hear, possibly see, the sounds with another perspective.
Drops of sounds which disperse their tones like ink on blotting paper! It's the best way of describing this Ian Boddy's total ambient work. Machines snore and spread their multicolored humming, like these waves which roll over the seaside while ejecting some seaweeds and garbage on the shore. In fact, we can imagine as well the slow movement of a wave of sounds which release some of its droning under the tears and the laments of the sounds which won't be able to escape In short, everything is allowed to the imagination that wants to explore the limits of its subconscious here. Tone 1 pours its sounds and its tones in a sonic magma where nothing gets lost, nothing builds up itself. Sonic twist, snores, moanings and drones are floating, sometimes as caresses and sometimes as nails which scrape the silence. They are escaping out in the 5 verses in TONE SCIENCE which has not that much differences between each chapter. Tone 2 is more filmic with tragic moments, like moments of fright, with ringings of carillons and incisive blades which cut out through a shroud of ambiences weaved in the guts of synthesizers. It's not for dance, nor daydream because the tragic brusqueness will make your brain jumping out. Except that sometimes it does very spatial, in particular with the synthesized language in Tone 3 and in Tone 5. There is no rhythm on TONE SCIENCE! Only a pile of sounds cut out in 5 chapters which are more or less all equals, so much at the level of the explorations as the emotions. Except that a well-defined color seems to escape from these 5 chapters, creating a parallel universe where everything justifies itself. So, Tone 4 is more aggressive with a good ferocity in the exploration of sounds. One would imagine to be in the middle of a cave where the walls ooze of pain.
TONE SCIENCE is this kind of educational album which aims to show all the paranormal capacities of the Modular synths. Like a master of the abstract art, Ian Boddy develops a pallet of sounds in order to size their tones in an immense mosaic which depicts the underside of the decor of a universe which will always be at the borders of all the probabilities. After two listenings and eyes interrogators from my sweet love Lise, I understood that TONE SCIENCE became an object of curiosity that I would have some difficulty to share. An adventure in sounds and in tones ...
Sylvain Lupari (March 12th, 2016) ***½**
Available at DiN Bandcamp