Fountain Fountain Joyous Mountain

Digitalis Recordings DIGIV058
incl. 19 % VAT, excl.  Shipping
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The long awaited second album from Melissa Agate, five years after her debut album for Type Recordings. A beautiful blend of reduced, Gamelan-like bells and percussion with elements of Kosmische and vocal pop.
It's been over five years since we last heard from Melissa Agate aka Sanso-Xtro on her record for Type, "Sentimentalist." In those five years quite a bit has happened. Agate's relocated to her native Australia and the move has treated her well. Fountain Fountain Joyous Mountain takes a lot of the ideas from her first record and dials them in, pushing everything to the next level. This collection of songs is a quiet force, blissfully confident and expertly assembled. Sanso's soundworld is fully immersive environment.
On the opener, "Fountain Fountain," we get a glimpse of everything to come. There's this carefully controlled chaos at work that is immediately hypnotizing. Agate sings simple passages toward the end, welcoming listeners into this new world as her voice floats above the fray.
It becomes obvious as the album progresses that Agate is, at heart, a drummer. The staccato rhythms and percussive embellishments bring the album to life. These rapid-fire beats in conjunction with precise, half-speed instrumentation work in perfect harmony. Reminiscent of Blackdance-era Schulze at times, there's an intoxicating dizzyness that is effortlessly present in "The Origin of Birds" and "Wood Owl Wings a Rush Rush." Agate even throws a few nods to free jazz with "Goodnight Thylacine." Her skill as a drummer is matched by her ability as a songwriter, knowing when to push it over the top and when to hold back. Album closer, "Exit: Joyous Mountain," sounds like a lost Alan Lomax gem with its melodica/harmonica duet and delicate singing.
"Hello Night Crow" is the literal and figurative center of the album, though. It starts with a ringing synth loop that gives nothing away until the chord changes emerge a minute in. Again it's about the slow-build, raising the tension and anticipation before melting into the sky. "You wouldn't recognize that its not there anymore," Agate sings over the bubbling waves of synths. It is beautiful and crushing.
Fountain Fountain Joyous Mountain was mastered by Lawrence English. Vinyl cut at D+M in Berlin, Artwork and design by Fergal Brennan. Vinyl-edition, limited to 500 copies.

Sanso-Xtro: Fountain Fountain Joyous ...

Fountain Fountain Sanso-Xtro 04:35
The Origin Of Birds Sanso-Xtro 03:07
Wood Owl Wings A Rush Sanso-Xtro 03:24
Golden Hour Sanso-Xtro 03:07
Hello Night Crow Sanso-Xtro 04:16
Light Come Light Go Ghost Sanso-Xtro 05:28
Goodnight Thylacine Sanso-Xtro 05:04
Observes Shadows Sanso-Xtro 04:10
Exit Joyous Mountain Sanso-Xtro 02:50

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