Review: Andrew And The TV Cowboys – Mono No Aware (A Soundtrack)

Boston, USA’s Andrew Cosentino describes himself as a nineteen year old music drop out so marketing may not be his strong suit. Furthermore, as the artist concedes, his new album is sample heavy to such an extent that Cosentino has actually forgotten the source of some of the samples. Nevertheless ‘Mono No Aware’ is, as the subtitle suggests, a soundtrack of sorts as it’s certainly an evocative collection of music.

The album couldn’t begin in more sedate and elegant fashion, thanks to the piano piece ‘Kingdoms’; giving the impression of a talented, possibly tortured classical artist. The mash up that is ’99th Lullaby’, all eastern mysticism and glitchy beats, isn’t the most logical way to succeed that sombre tune but then this isn’t a logical record. We also have African chant samples (‘Afarensis’), breakbeats and busking (for ‘Public Alleys’) to follow. The samples vary between world music, soul singers, rap and Francoise Hardy; frequently appearing at odd moments.

Another piano piece, ‘Don’t Go There On Foot (Piano Sonata No. 1)’,  comes across as rather austere although its sample of waves does somewhat soften the mood but the two part ‘Seratonin Blues’ is just discordant and jarring. Thankfully, that turns out to be an aberration rather than the norm as each piece tends to be, at the very least, atmospheric but there are only a few tracks which really stick their hooks into you. In this regard, the album works best towards the centre as the hypnotic, ambience of ‘Nona’ and ‘Gara’ seduce by the ears.

So the school report in this case is promising. Lack of cohesiveness aside, ‘Mono No Aware’ should be seen as a record demonstrating the possibilities available to  Cosentino. Attention to quality control and a more linear approach would be advised for future assignments but one day people might look back at this record and see it as the first step in a musical journey from a talented, genre-bending producer.

Web Sites:
Bandcamp Stream for the Album

Further Listening:
A Ninja Slob Drew Me

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