Tim Hecker – “Black Phase” (Singles Going Steady)

Tim Hecker is back with a new album, and he's brought all of his dark, ambient soundscapes to the table once more with "Black Phase".

Pryor Stroud: Tim Hecker’s dark-electro “Black Phase” purports to be part of a sequence, but it refuses to reveal what the rest of this sequence consists of: what is the phase that follows this “black phase”? Was there a preceding white phase that, due to some transformative event, darkened to its current color? The track doesn’t provide any answers, but through snatches of feedback and ethereal choral chants, it suggests a reality that teases transience — this will be over soon, don’t worry — while remaining stubbornly and ominously constant. [8/10]

Emmanuel Elone: Tim Hecker is back with a new album, and he’s brought all of his dark, ambient soundscapes to the table once more with “Black Phase”. The track opens with some echoing female vocal melodies that give way to ominous electronic sounds and even a distorted guitar sound towards the back end of the song. It isn’t Hecker’s best work, but it is dynamic, interesting, and a worthwhile ambient piece that’s equal parts beautiful and haunting. [7/10]

Chad Miller: The vocals closer to the beginning were okay, but the background music is the main thing to get excited for. Fade-ins and fade-outs were executed masterfully, keeping the music moving, and Hecker managed to incorporate a good variety of sounds while still making the song seem continuous. [7/10]

Chris Ingalls: Hecker doesn’t like to construct songs in the traditional sense. What you usually end up with is a collection of sounds that seem randomly thrown together. That’s sort of the case here, although there seems to be a bit more order in the chaos this time around. There’s certainly plenty of gloom, while forbidding chanting mix with organ and heavily distorted guitars (or keyboards?). It doesn’t seem to really go anywhere, but it provides the desired menacing atmosphere. [7/10]

SCORE: 7.25


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