Hypnagogue Review – Circular Scriptures by Steve Brand

24th May 2010

In the first release on the new Relaxed Machinery label, Steve Brand offers up a suite of three long-form pieces in a classic abstract style. His tones and layers are cold and deeply packed, a constant and inescapable cold wind of sound peppered with slight alien-tech underpinnings. With each piece clocking in at 20 minutes plus, Brand expertly uses the time to build and deconstruct, over and over, each new form rising as a mutation of the one prior, an endlessly shifting thought form. Circular Scriptures hovers on the edge of being quite dark, but Brand’s drones impart a sort of white-noise near-relaxation, their smoothness and calm progressions slowing your breathing and drawing you inside while a sense of uncertainty and potential danger skims the surface, pricking at your brain. It’s a well-made CD that truly requires attentive listening to appreciate its depth. It also makes for an impressive first showing for Relaxed Machinery. Be advised, rM–good things are now expected. With Circular Scriptures, Steve Brand made sure of that.