With so much brain-rewiring music floating around out there, dying to be heard and loved, it is exceedingly rare that Blue Tapes partners with an artist for multiple releases. Which makes the return of ambient composer Benjamin Finger to the label all the more special.
Back in 2015, we released Ben’s classic Amorosa Sensitiva as part of our x-ray series of clear vinyl releases. That LP felt like it was sucking abstract images and scraps of feelings from your dreams and pumping them back out as pure electronic tones, occasionally lashed with elements of free jazz.
His latest release, blue forty-eight in our tape series, has a gentler touch. Something about it feels tantalisingly intangible – like the music itself is just slightly beyond our grasp.
In Flashes, what sounds like a cycling harpsichord arpeggio repeatedly emerges from and sinks back into clouds of synth, each note tickling your brain, telling you things that only really make sense in that all-too-brief hinterland between wake and sleep.
At all times, the music feels deeply spatial. In Sleepy, an entrancing, part-muttered vocal from singer Inga Lill Farstad is a patter of pleasingly percussive Norwegian that feels like it is dancing above wherever in your body your soul is stuck, beckoning you out.
Throughout the rest of the album, languid vocal phrases from Farstad and fellow guest vocalist Lynn Fister reappear almost randomly, always in the right place. An expertly woven red thread.
Much to love here for fans of beatless music for whom feeling is everything and meaning is secondary.
Praise for Benjamin Finger
"Like a gleaming reverie, slightly submerged... redolent of Alice Coltrane’s graceful, spiritual ecstasy and the decelerated density and dusky forest-plunge of Wolfgang Voigt’s GAS project... A fever dream at turns gorgeous and fiery." - The Ransom Note
"It’s usually a cert that we will love anything that comes from the wonderfully diverse world of boutique label Blue Tapes and X Ray Records. This stunningly hypnotic release from Benjamin Finger is not about to change that in the least. The six tracks on Amorosa Sensitiva are the stuff of beautiful daydreams if they had a electronic soundtrack." - #SRCZ
“As a performer, Benjamin Finger is both an empathetic voice and a force of rejuvenation. He dwells upon sustained minor chords so that imperfection oozes to the surface, the harmonies rippling as the pitch falters, and melodies slowed as though pressing through the resistance of stiff joints and withered muscle fibre.” – ATTN Magazine
“Dive into the kind of abstract surrealism that can only come from careful electroacoustic tinkering. The results can be intimidating, but for those too familiar with the status quo to find the same-old exciting, a rewarding challenge is more than welcome.” – Sputnik Music
“The moments that morph into pleasant sounds hit you abruptly, as if you suddenly fell down a hole and started floating among angelic monsters in the sky.” – Slug Mag