Bibio: Vignetting the Compost

[4 March 2009]

By Alan Ranta

Chris: How do you feel, patient 957?
Mrs. Hurdicure: Oh, um, like a, like a fresh towel, drying on the line on a summer’s day. Oh! I feel like a worm peekin’ it’s head out of the ground after a rainstorm and seein’ no robin. Oh-ha-ha-ha! I feel like God’s rubbing my tummy! You know, I haven’t felt this happy since my son came to visit at Christmas.
- From Kids In The Hall’s 1996 classic feature film Brain Candy

Memory is an odd thing. Although you can refer to certain events and periods in your own life, the human body completely regenerates itself every seven years, so the person that most of those things happened to no longer physically exists. In time, it can seem like those experiences happened in a movie or to someone else entirely. Basically, that is the sound Stephen “Bibio” Wilkinson has been cultivating throughout his career, one that has now achieved perfection.

Bibio’s third album of fuzzy nostalgia does everything it should. Somewhere nestled in its lackadaisical acoustic guitar, worn tape loops, ambient field recordings, and sun-bleached atmospheres is the sensation of your sister being brought home from the hospital as a baby, your favorite childhood Christmas, going fishing with your old man, all such vague yet pivotal moments. Upon hearing it, Vignetting The Compost will join them in the cobwebbed corners of your mind. There is no bass and often no real progressive song structure here to sink your teeth into. This is a happy haze on the brink of white noise, no more, no less.

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