Bonobo - Migration
Music has finally come out of it's December and early January hibernation and finally we have some solid tunes coming out. Bonobo throws his hat into the fray with this new release Migration in which he continues his search for that perfect transcendent sound. On this record it seems He has gotten closer than ever before crafting a record about being a traveling musician, and the experiences that inevitably brings. His mix of ambient and electronica is soothing to say the least, but this is not just music to sleep or study to, it has depth and vitality all it's own. "Outlier" is the first track we get with a solid dance beat and it comes just at the right time as things were pretty slow up until this point. This music sort of has this really nice slow burn, slowly changing its surroundings but managing to keep the spirit of the track always intact. Bonobo is very similar to Tycho in that way but He does manage to bring in some vocals and his music skews more electronic than Tycho's has as of late. Migration also has this really distinctive sense of loneliness throughout The thing about Bonobo is that he has consistently been quietly putting out great records for years waiting patiently for the world to finally take notice. We are due for a shift in global taste so perhaps this might be where it comes from, who knows?
Migration is so well produced and so deep that even after multiple listens you still find little exciting elements. You would assume with production this intricate that you would loose some of the organic feel, but not at all. Bonobo leaves you wandering in haze, or some kind of magical forest, where you don't know what's next, but you are ready for it. Bonobo's previous release focused more on the club side of things, which was fine, but clearly this is where his passion lies, music that is lush instead of dancey, expansive instead of inclusive. It gives Migration a much more world music feel especially on tracks like "Kerala" where the rhythm is grounded in dance, but the strings give it an entirely new world life. There are times however where you really do have to fight the urge to not just let this album become a background soundtrack if you are really trying to listen hard. It can lull you into this almost daze where the music sort of swirls and swirls but you can't grasp any of it. Still Migration really is a triumph and pushes Bonobo's music to the point it feels like it always belonged. Take a listen.
8.3 out of 10