We've often mentioned how much we enjoy meeting a new artist and releasing their music for the first time. Such is the case with this beautiful release, by Finnish ambient artist Nettless, entitled From Beyond.
Many artists have probably experienced what we might call 'diversionary inspiration', the phenomenon of setting out to create one thing but ending up creating something very different, simply because that is where the muse led. In the case of Toni Viholainen, he set out to make some electronic sounds for his project Ten After Dawn, but discovered to his surprise that some of the softer melodic phrases he was making were leading him in an unplanned direction, towards the release of a pure ambient album. This release is that album, and we are very glad he chose to follow his muse where she led.
We would describe the music on this release as lush, direct, and revelatory, well suited for work listening, meditation, sleep listening, or just snuggling up by a fire to enjoy some hot cocoa. What makes the music of Nettless so special is not any unusual fusions of style or clever orthogonal techniques; instead, it is the straightforward melodic clarity of the compositions and of the production that cause this music to stand out. Put simply, this is music that is a pure joy to listen to, from the very first listen, but with the depth to be worthwhile for many listens to come. This is a very difficult balance to achieve, and we find it remarkable how easy Nettless makes it seem.
What is particularly surprising to us is that this is the very first ambient album Nettless has ever produced. Clearly, he has a reservoir of talent and experience in composition that he is drawing from, but to create an album as mature and listenable as From Beyond on the very first try is an amazing achievement.
The artist says on his web site that:
"This has still been a painful process. While I was recording the album From Beyond, I quite often felt that this will never be completed in a way I could approve. Painful, but in the end, I got rewarded. Now it feels damn good."
We would amend that to say that we all got rewarded, and yes it does indeed feel good. For there is nothing painful in the slightest about From Beyond; it is a magnificent collection of superb ambient music, a collection that we are very proud to bring our listeners.