Signals IV

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Band Name Sabled Sun
Album Name Signals IV
Type Album
Released date 13 May 2014
Labels Cryo Chamber
Music StyleDark Ambient
Members owning this album1


1. Signals IV 58:53
Total playing time 58:53

Review @ Dotflac

17 September 2014

Signals IV is the darkest episode of the serie.

In may 2014, Sabled Sun killed four birds with one stone. Announced for some weeks, the digipak including the three first Signals opus just released (and is already sold out on the label's page) for all the fans of heavy drone and space ambient that treasure their CDs. At the same time, Simon Heath, who's hiding behind Sabled Sun, Atrium Carceri and his own label Cryo Chamber, made available since the 13th of may the fourth episode of the Signals saga, and under a lot of angles, it smells like changing. For the best.

When Signals I, II and III used at least two variations more or less close to their respective themes, Signals IV will stay faithful to its sound base during its almost 59 minutes. A monolithoc drone appropriates space and time ; combining both a mechanic aspect by its metallic resonances and an organic one by its incessant humming, the sounds bring to mind a sacred location of heavy immensity, such a titanic temple which belonged to a fallen civilization. The stone construction turns little by little into ruins further to the assaults of time and the recapture of the mineral by the vegetable. It's oppressing, it's heavy, it's mesmerizing, and it's definitely what makes Signals IV the darkest episode of the serie.

As we go along the piece, a cold breath appears periodically, rising us above the situation. The solitude and the desolation running through this post-apocalyptic world reveal themselves when our field of view widens, are only staying a freezing wind to fill the ruins and the silence unhabiting them, distant siren sounds looking like a recollection of the chaos that preceded the implosion of the society we knew, metallic noises reminding gongs, forewarning a dark future... But more discreet, we discern a sound structure of low volume, central to the Signals concept : static interfering in the soundscape described just above.

Indeed, the infortunate sentenced to wander alone on a devastated Earth, the same one we follow in the albums 2145 and 2146, seeks next to the main project a trace of life through the radio signals lost in the air. However, the Signals tend to become darker, particularly in this episode, as if our protagonist lost more hope to find others of his kind. An obvious fatalism leaks from Signals IV, fed by the heaviness of the drone and the repetition of the same mute interferences through the whole composition.

A second kind of static, more visible, expresses itself around the 27th minute, fading randomly in and out until the last stutterings of the track, while the metallic tones and the insidious wind successively dominate, accentuating the unease in a generally dark landscape, impressive by its suggestive power. One of the most noteworthy moment is located at the last minute, when the breath totally disappears, giving way to the initial drone and the last radio waves received. This effect makes me imagine a camera back-travelling, coming from a close-up on the lone protagonist and progressively moving backwards, leaving him alone and immobile in the middle of a gigantic street surrounded by skyscrapers and filled with flying ashes, before entirely fading out. The disappearance of the wind noise pulls us out of the situation we shared with this man, increasing the solitude and the darkness where Sabled Sun put his character. Simon Heath didn't lie when he described Cryo Chamber as a label focused on top-notch dark ambient with a cinematic edge.

The three first works of Sabled Sun in the realms of drone and space ambient were already good to very good, but he achieved to strike even harder with a Signals IV that may open a new era concerning the future of his project. Massive, impressive and fascinating could be some words used to define this album, but in the end, I will just advise you to pounce on it, especially for 5 $.

2147 is already annouced, and if the quality of the main story develops as for Signals, you may as well start to be impatient.

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