Despite his relentless, high quality output, I haven't done a good job featuring James Clements' music here on ASIP. Sure, he's contributed a great isolatedmix, given us a sneak peak into his Wantlist, and had tracks included in many of our year-end mixes, but I haven't previously singled-out any of his immense ambient full-lengths.
Thinking about why this may be (apart from the fact there's hundreds of releases I will never get around to writing about), I find James' ambient productions hard to write about. Hard to do justice, really. Ironically, describing why it's hard to write about probably does a pretty good job at, well, writing about it.
ASC's ambient productions have a tell-tale depth and atmosphere to them. There's no doubt a significant amount of influence and inspiration comes from space themes, perhaps harking back to his original Deep Space ambient mix series. But just like the unknown detail amongst the void, James' music comes to life through the minutia, the subtle maneuvers amongst an often ominous density that I've only known the likes of Biosphere, Wolfgang Voigt, and Markus Guentner to perfect.
ASC's latest release, his first ambient output on his own Auxiliary label after a string of amazing albums on Silent Season, once again highlights his amazing ear for detail. Trans-Neptunian Objects takes you to an unknown place, toying with sonic frequencies, depicting the drama you'd expect from shadows of rocky behemoths, and the overall feeling of insignificance.
James is also excelling in soundtrack work, (take his Bottom Of The World OST) which probably means the vivid ideas of far-reached planets and asteroid belts that he conjures up here, either borrow from, or help inform the mindset needed for deeper visual storytelling.
But without calling it a soundtrack, Trans-Neptunian Objects is as close as you'll come to the stories, adventure and the unknown far-side of the Galaxy.
Available on Bandcamp.