Aug 2012 20

Tomoroh Hidari - Some Stars Not Yet Black HolesTomoroh Hidari
Category: Ambient / Experimental
Album: Some Stars Not Yet Black Holes
Stars: 2.5
Blurb: A mellow, ambient project that fights to escape the typical meandering drone so common in the genre with varying levels of success.


The ambient music project from Austrian musican, programmer, producer, and sound engineer Oliver Stummer, Tomoroh Hidari embraces a somewhat retro futurist feel, taking sound effects and arrangements that seem born from ‘60s and ‘70s science fiction cinema and working them into long, subdued pieces that sometimes overstay their welcome. The occasion entwining more IDM leaning sensibilities works wonders in preventing Some Starts Not Yet Black Holes from simply fading off into the background, but this, unfortunately, has the added effect of bringing some the album’s annoyances to the forefront of the listener’s consciousness.

While the opening track, “Polaris” does little to break any new ground or go beyond typical ambient work, “Algol” slowly builds into a synth loop that gives the track a more unique feel, but becomes grating after a few minutes due to excess repetition. The second longest, but most successful track of the album, “Sirius” capitalizes on the introduction of more IDM-like elements that give the track a refreshing but subtle complexity that makes its nearly 12 minute runtime pass surprisingly quickly. This subtle dose of IDM also appears in “Arcturus” and the exceptionally long “Pleiades” with the former very much capturing the feel of the minimal techno solo work of Cabaret Voltaire’s Richard H. Kirk. “Pleiades,” however, suffers greatly from its length, feeling more like a marathon with its bubbling and somewhat annoying synth line. Resting between those two tracks, “Abdebaran” returns to a dreamier, more unassuming style that seems ripped from a film score, but due to its placement right after one of the more complex tracks of the album, this song too suffers from its excessive length, becoming noticeably tedious a bit after the midpoint of the track.

As unassuming background music, Some Stars Not Yet Black Holes is generally a success, offering plenty of incidental spacey mood pieces that would work well to accentuate other media. Unfortunately, as a standalone piece, Tomoroh Hidari’s work can frequently feel excessively longwinded with several tracks becoming a bit grating around their midpoints or later. While the effort to produce an atypical ambient album is admirable and much of what is presented works quite well, especially in small doses, Tomoroh Hidari’s work would greatly benefit from being a bit more succinct.
Track list:

  1. Polaris
  2. Algol
  3. Sirius
  4. Regulus
  5. Arcturus
  6. Aldebaran
  7. Pleiades

Tomoroh Hidari Website
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Tomoroh Hidari SoundCloud
Ivory Bunker Website
Purchase at:
Amazon MP3
Trubie Turner (Flexei)

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