THE GLIMMER ROOM: Memories Foreknown (2018)
“Memories Foreknown is a very good compilation with a fair balance between the ambient and rhythmic sides of a splendid and touching artist”
1 Fields Full of Poppies 3:37
2 Mr Price Remembers 4:16
3 One Day Late May 5:08
4 Marianne, Please Get Help 3:56
5 Hawfrost 5:11
6 707 7:09
7 Brown 5:18
8 Romney Marsh 6:27
9 Lento Coda 5:44 N
10 Carbon Statues 11:24
11 The View from the Summerhouse 4:07
12 Astromenda (Bonus Track) 8:04
13 Rusty Trees (Bonus Track) 6:30
MEMORIES FOREKNOWN is a compilation album of The Glimmer Room which appeared on the Australian label Ultima Thule in early 2018. This label originates from the famous radio show Ultima Thule Ambient Music Show which plays on Australian public radio for more than 25 years. An impressive collection of 28 original titles by 28 artists was released in June 2016 to mark the 25th anniversary of this show, which promotes electronic music in a more ambient style. Although sometimes ... So, this compilation of Andy Condon's musical project is gathered in its simplest way, without remastering and without a continuous sound mosaic, showing this progression of The Glimmer Room towards a more ambient and especially a more lyrical musical approach. Although sometimes ... The interesting thing is that there are 5 completely new tracks on this compilation which goes from the album Now We Are Six (2007) to The Locked Book which was realized last year. And it's with a great pleasure that I rediscover some old titles and it's with the ears all wide open that I gulped up the new compositions of MEMORIES FOREKNOWN.
And it's with a title from Now We Are Six that this compilation starts. What catches my ears is the very bucolic philharmonic approach of Fields Full of Poppies (original version). I had already forgotten the fragrances of this title as well as the quite electronic rock approaches of titles such as Hawfrost, 707 and Brown which also come from the third album of The Glimmer Room. And these three tracks which are going one after the other in the heart of this compilation lay down an evolutionary rhythmic curve, although Hawfrost is more ambient than rhythmic, which fits very well after the first 22 minutes of ambient music. Mr Price Remembers is a very good title that we find on The Locked Book and which precedes a first new track; One Day Late May is a nice track which breathes a little much that scent of tranquility related to this album and ends up with an ambience of carnival. Marianne, Please Get Help, like The View from the Summerhouse both from A Diary of Occurrences, are throwing at us these delicious ambiences full of mystery and of romance which are floating around this masterpiece, totally ignored on this compilation, that is I Remain. These are great times which take us where we want to be! Speaking of abstruse atmospheres, Carbon Statues from Home Without the Journey is the latest known track in the discography of The Glimmer Room. It's a track full of mysteries with slow movements of orchestral layers which give us chills. A kind of rhythm with jingles is hanging onto our eardrums while being overwhelmed by these arrangements that have become the musical signature of Andy Condon. The new title Lento Coda is a little in the same spirit whereas Romney Marsh offers a slow waltz of layers, some of which are deeply poignant, with effects of oboe and flutes which quietly fading out near the banks of a stream. Astromenda and Rusty Trees were composed exclusively for this compilation. And they are amazing and refreshing surprises. The first is a very good down-tempo that sways in Andy Condon's unique esoteric moods, while Rusty Trees offers a catchier rhythm with jerk effects, in the tempo and in the voice effects, which give a particular stamp to an approach which resolutely needs a little more finite. But I liked it!
Nearly 70 minutes of a compilation which has totally ignored the jewel of The Glimmer Room and yet remains very tasty, this is the feat of MEMORIES FOREKNOWN. The unreleased tracks are all very good and the way the album is assembled takes us between ambient phases and to livelier structures, further supporting the interest of those who discover the music of The Glimmer Room. As far as I'm concerned, I have listening to MEMORIES FOREKNOWN my ears trapped in this enchantment that attaches us to the lyricism of a superb artist who has found a way to take root in my soul.
Sylvain Lupari (August 16th, 2018) ***½**