Francis M. Gri has impressed on past releases for his own label KrysaliSound, most notably with last year’s ‘Ghost Dreamers Town’. It was an ambient/post-rock album which kept an insistent melodic and rhythmic flow throughout. For revglow, the outlook is very similar but here Gri’s instrumental reverie is augmented by female vocals from fellow Italian, Lilium.
The opening ‘Scars’ is a curious assembly of ghostly female vocals, drum and guitar loops which seems to drift pleasantly by until, after two and a half minutes, the track unfolds into a sequence of hypnotic synth patterns which usher in the soulful singing of Lilium for the first time. ‘Strangers’ is blessed with similar heavenly layers of sound and whilst it may fall into the sphere of dreampop, its roots can also be found in ambient music. An unexpected double bass introduces ‘Phantom Theatre’ but more captivating still are its subtle but relentless rhythms and beats which combine perfectly with the breathless vocals.
This juxtaposition is the key to the album and it can be no coincidence that on its best moments, the urgency of Lilium’s delivery is matched by Gri’s complex arrangements. For ‘This Is The Day’ Lilium resembles a lost siren trapped within walls of shifting beats and ringing guitars and this impression is given further credence on the excellent ‘Seagulls Choir’; one of the more understated tracks which revolves around desolate piano and Lilium’s valedictory cries.
Admittedly, some momentum is lost towards the end of the record, most noticeably on the lighter than air ‘Self Portrait,’ but otherwise this is a deep and moving listening experience. In conclusion, ‘Sound Post Tension’ presents further evidence that Gri’s KrysaliSound empire deserves far more prominence.
Francis M. Gri, Lamb