Near The Parenthesis: Go Out and See
Music Made By People

Interestingly, Near the Parenthesis (San Francisco-based electronic musician Tim Arndt) creates music that shares many of the same qualities one encounters in Isan. Both acts produce immaculate tracks suffused with analogue warmth, constant rhythmic activity, and gleaming melodies, and the music of both groups tends towards the gentler end of the sonic spectrum. But what's most surprising is how much more Near the Parenthesis's recording impresses when heard alongside Isan's Plans Drawn in Pencil. Why? One simple but key reason: Go Out and See works a deeply emotive dimension into its melodic material that elevates it far above the merely pretty. Arndt assembles his material from by-now familiar elements—field elements of voices and environmental noise, gently chattering beats, billowing electronics, glistening organ tones, subtle layers of glitch—but weaves them into affecting, often tender quasi-ambient compositions drenched with feeling. Cases in point, quietly euphoric pieces like “The Evasion of Like” and “I Remember It Differently” unfurl with a lush effervescence and melancholic wistfulness that's truly lovely. Only the fourth release issued on the Toronto-based MMBP (Music Made By People) label, Go Out and See impresses as a remarkably accomplished and fully-realized work.

July 2006