What hasn't already been said about bvdub and is left to say?
He's a man of many words and expression, often through his relentless music output. Some, have wished for more departures from his sound over the years - a signature sound at that. In Yours are Stories of Sadness, Brock gives a glimpse of change, just enough for him to prove he is never done evolving and in fact, reflecting is just as powerful.
Brock's releases often vary in intensity and emotion. From the harshness of static, to the rollercoaster of varying song structures, and the pull of the soaring melodies; there's perhaps one thing that Brock hasn't played with before to keep us guessing, and that's track length.
Not to make this entirely about how long a track is, but not only have I wondered what Brock would construct in such strict circumstances, but he's notorious for the progression in his ambient music - so much so they should start naming an approach to ambient music after him...
With each track on this release 1/4 of the normal bvdub length of around 12+ minutes, and each depicting a time in which he remembered a moment from 4-years ago, this is the purest distillation of Brock we've seen to date.
Each track starts as if it was embarking on a typical bvdub journey, but quickly forms its shape and purpose - be it a unique sample in track 3, Pop Ambient sounding synthesizers in track 5, Helios style organic warmth in track 9, more familiar heart-wrenching chords in track 14 or soaring static and synthesizers in closer, track 19.
bvdub notoriously isn't the easiest introduction into his own music (let me explain that a little). His tracks are often intense and emotional, yet placed for positions of quiet and personal listening. Finding the right moment to listen to bvdub is one of the reasons I don't listen to his albums more - they become destined for very special occasions, intense emotional places, and I think that's why he manages to connect with so many people on a much deeper level than most. You don't listen to one track of his, you listen to an entire album, and you're his companion in time of need, stress, celebration or reflection. Be it a close death, a friendship, or in this instance, fragmented memories, Brock is brilliant at painting these vivid emotions.
With Yours are Stories of Sadness, Brock not only made his music more accessible, but he's managed to distill the many parts that make up his sound over the years into tiny fragments. You can hear everything in here, with nods to the past and a glimpse into the potential future. He's not one to show off, but if you needed a resume from Brock, this is it - perfectly executed and a summation of his many unique styles. If this is the sound of bvdub recalling memories from the past 4 years, this is also the distilled sound of bvdub from the past 4 years, but with one clear difference.
Unlike his previous works, where the painting was finished, these memories are purposefully grainy and incomplete. Like a 12-minute bvdub track, the remaining 8 minutes or so, are left for you to wonder. And what better music to wonder with.
"Unlike all my other works which are meant to be in the foreground, these are meant to stay in the shadows... to be the quiet and subconscious soundtrack... each not a story, but just a moment... that moment you realize. Unlike the norm, when I elucidate every second to near unbearable levels ;), this time how that moment materializes or continues is up to you..."