Rest at Worlds End

by Dan Raper

15 March 2009

cover art


Rest at Worlds End

(Rune Grammofon)
US: 20 Jan 2009

If there’s a Rune Grammofon supergroup it’s Humcrush, the collaboration between Norwegian avant-keyboardist Stale Storlokken and percussionist Thomas Stronen. So the expectation, prior to listening to their third album Rest at Worlds End, is for meticulous improvisations with rigorous dissection of harmony and rhythm. They don’t disappoint, yet in doing so they somehow miss that spark of invention, of frenzied tangential discovery, that improvisation promises. Perhaps it’s because Stronen’s albeit virtuosic percussion improvisations exist in this nebulous void, sparsely populated by atmospheric keyboard swirls. Or that they too quickly take a back seat, as on the serene title track, to Storlokken’s simple synth-pad explorations. Still, there’s an upside to this more relaxed approach, and it’s that Humcrush almost do find that promised “rest at worlds’ end.” “Airport” echoes and plucks its way to some eerie, compulsive netherworld over layers of minimal, drone-inspired keyboard vamp. The recording of these tracks, though taken from live performances across Europe, is so clean and clear you’d be mistaken for taking this as a scrupulous studio construction.

Rest at Worlds End



We all know how critical it is to keep independent voices alive and strong on the Internet. Please consider a donation to support our work as independent cultural critics and historians. Your donation will help PopMatters stay viable through these changing and challenging times where costs have risen and advertising has dropped precipitously. We need your help to keep PopMatters strong and growing. Thank you.


//Mixed media

Saul Williams Commands Attention at Summerstage (Photos + Video)

// Notes from the Road

"Saul Williams played a free, powerful Summerstage show ahead of his appearance at Afropunk this weekend.

READ the article