Aux Field: Imaginable Layers
Umor Rex

A cassette edition issued in a limited run of eighty copies, Imaginable Layers is the debut release from Tbilisi, Georgia-based producer Rezo Glonti under the Aux Field name (material under his birth name previously appeared on labels such as Time Released Sound and Flaming Pines). Its forty-four minutes extend the work associated with analogue synthesizer pioneers into the present, and as the recording progresses one can't help but be reminded at times of groundbreakers like Klaus Schulze and Tangerine Dream. Eschewing abrasiveness, Glonti fashions luscious soundworlds using analogue hardware equipment, and enough whooshes and twinklings surface to satisfy the cravings of even the most fanatical synthesizer enthusiast.

In a track that wouldn't sound out of place on a ‘70s Tangerine Dream collection, mellotron-like washes lend the opening “Station III” an aura of celestial sweep and grandeur. The multi-layered patterns that surge throughout “Room and Dust,” on the other hand, hint at some vague connection to Steve Reich's Music for 18 Musicians, even if the latter's wholly acoustic instrumentation is leagues removed from Imaginable Layers. On an album that generally downplays beatsmithing, “Drain Dub” gets its subtly funky kick from a lumbering rimshot-and-bass combination, while the swinging “View From Your Window” catches one's ear immediately in the way it augments vaporous smears and swirls with a synth pattern that resembles, strangely enough, the twang of a Jew's harp (jaw harp, if you prefer).

If there's one thing I like most of all about Imaginable Layers, it's that each of its eight tracks presents a slightly different style and sound design, differences, however, that are never so great that the pieces sound unrelated to one another; in Glonti's universe, it makes perfect sense to follow the epic soundscape “Birma” with the rather more gentle “Lineair.” And, despite the fact that the material was produced using analogue machinery, the tracks are characterized by a warmth and organic quality that makes the human presence responsible for their creation feel very much part of the overall equation.

March 2015