Rafael Anton Irsarri and Benoît Pioulard previously combined as Orcas, in somewhat unexpected fashion with an accessible, gentle ambient post-rock sound - Benoît's soft voice floating on top of dreamy piano pieces and the distant plucks of distorted guitar strings. Rafael and Benoît's newest collaboration moves them deeper into more recognizable textured ambient territory as Gailes.
Rafael is known as a great manipulator of sound design, sometimes creating pure ambient tracks from just one guitar; slowly degrading, stretching, looping sounds, and then manipulating some of the many pieces of analog equipment found within his studio in the woods of New York.
Benoît's music isn't too far from this either. Gently shifting colors and static, create a warm press of hands on your shoulders as you slowly immerse yourself in the warmth and degradation to emit from his processed guitars.
Together, Seventeen Words is their masterclass in creating new worlds. The depth and detail felt across the four tracks is a new subterranean level they've yet to reach by themselves. Often with humble beginnings, each track will go on to unveil finer detail. In album opener Requiem For An Airport Television Newsreader, it's the choral wash of vocals wrapping around mountain peaks. In Surface Variations In The Snowfall, it's the dramatic growth and swells of ambience against an unsettling guitar shuffle.
The last track, On Distant Fields, puts a gentle lullaby in the foreground, like listening back to an old country and western tape, as the hiss and textures try to distract you from the heartbreaking string melody and slowly emerging vocal-cry.
This is music for watching clouds slowly shape-shift. Music for watching ice-sheets slowly disintegrate into the blue abyss, and mountain avalanches in slow-motion.
Available on 12" and digital through Badabing Records.