Morr Music

ISAN - Glass Bird Movement


Berlin's Morr Music was responsible for some of the best electronica/IDM releases during the pioneering period of the early 00's, alongside labels such as City Center Offices. With the likes of Manual, Christian Kleine, and a rather brilliant Slowdive remix compilation, Blue Skied An' Clearit's often easy to look back and think the label's best times have passed, but as proven here, one of it's most notorious inclusions, ISAN are back with some of their best work yet. 

The title of their latest release is a perfect reflection of the sound you can expect from Antony Ryan and Robin Saville (ISAN) - six years after their last. Working from different locations (UK and Denmark), the pair create glorious, shimmering patterns of warm electronica that are familiar, yet unmistakably ISAN. Many would claim to have been inspired by Antony and Robin, and it would be easy to draw comparisons that exist somewhere in-between the analog depths of Freescha, the innovative abilities of Aphex Twin, the melodic constructs of BoC, and the technical drum-patterns of Loess, but I do so only to draw attention to the brilliance of ISAN's music.

Tracks like 'Lace Murex' hit with an air of confidence, the crispness of a fine production, that makes the hairs on your neck stand on end, as the slow-burning melody creeps in amongst the pulsating, crunchy synthesizers, all set on a crisp day at the seaside, full of color and joy. 

Switch to the analog 'Rattling Downhill' to hear ISAN's fun retro side, manipulating simple synthesizer constructs into an addictive, progressive dance, as a spectrum of color swirls around your already hypnotized head.

As if demonstrating a breadth of approaches to a sound which is often easy to pigeonhole, tracks like 'Slow Rings' present a completely unique approach to this quirky electronica sound, leading into more ambient and inviting sounds in the softer album closer, 'Risefallasleep'.

As well as being another ISAN classic, this album is one of two things. It's either two master-minds of electronica finally polishing off tracks that have been finessed over 15-years or so, which still feel as fresh today as they ever would. Or Antony and Robin just decided, 'hey, it's about time we showed the world how great this type of music can be again' - like those people you meet who are just so damn good at something, no-matter how little practice they've had - they've just got it, popping up six years later to remind us how music can make you feel. Beautiful colors, happiness, and music that was made with fun and laughter. This is music that ISAN do best, and they do it better than anyone else.

Available on Morr Music and Bandcamp.