Oren Ambarchi’s output has been so significant in the past couple years that it seems I have a new release in my hands every couple of weeks. That isn’t a bad thing, as everything he puts out has been pretty stellar. The latest release is a collaboration between Ambarchi and Robin Fox. They were asked to co-compose a soundtrack for Connected, a production from Australian dance company Chunky Move.
With Ambarchi on guitar and Fox on electronics, and with both playing various other instruments, it’s impressive how well the two artists manage to play off their distinct sound. A lot of it has to do with them giving each other a lot of space to perform — neither is overbearing or attempting to outplay the other. Opening track “Standing Mandala” is a great example of this, with both musicians working together to build a solid yet quiet groove. The electronic textures howl beneath the repetition, but don’t climax until the end because, well, where can they go from a heavy mechanical whirr? Ambarchi is fantastic with drones, but it’s on the title track that you can hear the concentration on space and minimalism that makes this pairing work so well. With these two, less is definitely more.