Brandon Hurtado ~ Other Spaces

OSGhosts fade with music. The banishment of stress, not to mention the complete erasure of the accompanying, all-consuming fear that rears its ugly head, is possible when listening to music. You can zone out and unwind, no matter the genre. Of course, ambient music is particularly effective at blocking out the everyday stress of life; Other Spaces channels that stress, that anxiety, and locks them away for good. As long as you’re listening, nothing that has any kind of negative intent can intrude or invade. The artist, Brandon Hurtado, recorded the music at a particularly stressful time, and he shut himself off from the world in order to properly channel those feelings.

Other Spaces is the result, and it’s a record that will keep you safe and snug. You can feel the trouble ebb away as it leaves the body. Permanently or temporarily, only time will tell. But music is a medication, and a therapy of the purest kind. “Black Circles” opens with a dusty, dry guitar, and its splayed notes stream idyllically into the soothing “Clavicle”, where the lakeside, diluted notes are left to hide in the sound, buried as if under an avalanche of autumn leaves. The aquatic tones lie half submerged in their watery sound, like a bridge of branches delicately traversing a small stream. The scratchy voices are almost erased as the ambient-drone drips over them, and then they’re blotted out easily by the sound; the stressful conversations give way to disconsolate prayers, sent to a deity who may or may not be listening.

The notes rebound in a pregnant mist of reverb, and the notes wobble in volume with the help of a tremolo effect. Reminiscent at times of the fog-soaked ambience of Grouper, Hurtado’s music oozes with relief and delicate peace. The deeper ambient sound of “Not Really There” echoes and weeps as the notes slide around in the cavernous space. “Stateless” gives off a vibe of isolation as its quiet, sparse notes gently shimmer and travel. The grainy guitar is left to dreamily roam the space, ironing the stress out of the creased thoughts. The haunted corridors that lurk within the subconscious mind are eventually cleansed. And there are no more ghosts. (James Catchpole)

Available here

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