[20 December 2006]
While I often harp on ambient releases that evoke no emotion in their listeners, it is true that “emotion” does not necessarily have to be the goal for an ambient release. In the case of Seht’s The Green Morning, the detachment is palpable, not to mention entirely intentional. What The Green Morning inspires, rather than a feeling or a mood, is something more concrete: It inspires vision, a picture of the world—or perhaps, in this case, a world—that perhaps we don’t get to see every day. The Green Morning is about empty space, barren metallic wastelands, and post-nuclear landscapes. The sense of emptiness in Seht’s work on this release is, in fact, so prominent as to become an instrument unto itself, even as there are very few moments that are necessarily silent. Opening track “Valles Marineris” features a low-pitched, ominous drone throughout, the final stages, perhaps, of some unspeakable tragedy, while everything else deals with the aftermath. “Olympus Mons” has faint metallic percussion throughout, the final remnants of life, while the remaining three tracks are largely built around static and silence, with only a few identifiably “musical” elements added for the sake of giving the listener something to identify with. The Green Morning is absolutely one of the finest ambient works I’ve heard this year, not for the emotion it squeezes out of its listeners, but for the fascination it inspires.