Emerging into actualization with a warm and radiant glow, LA-based duo Phillips & Jensen come into form and fruition with an immaculate level of New Age purity on their debut cassette, Patra. Tim Phillips (Tenstairs) and George Jensen (Sneaky Snake) condense their respective creative spheres into one seamless whole, pairing delicately crafted synthesizer patches with natural field recordings to shape a profound level of endearing mental opulence. Patra's tranquil ambient planes help cultivate vast habitats for jubilant melodies to thrive and fuse with the rich, organic auditory environment, as Phillips & Jensen deliver a refreshing and unique take on a classic genre of electronic music.
Tim Phillips and George Jensen met and became friends through playing in various projects in LA's dense music scene, initially teaming up to release one of Phillips' solo Tenstairs cassettes on Jensen's own Complicated Dance Steps imprint. This friendship continued to blossom into 2014, when the duo decided to turn an unused gallery space in the heart of LA's Echo Park into home base for the genesis of a new creative effort. Combining their assortment of instruments and equipment into one studio, their mutual enjoyment of nourishing, lush sound design immediately established an instrumental vocabulary of vintage hardware such as the Roland Juno series, the Yamaha DX-7, and the Oberheim Xpander, amongst others. Jensen utilizes his love of hiking and the outdoors to capture the sounds of the natural world and apply them in harmonious tandem with Phillips' synthesized pan flutes, marimbas, and steel drums. Samples of sea birds, crashing waves, chirping insects, and gusts of mountain wind coalesce and accentuate the cosmic swells and euphoric leads of P&J's precisely cultivated studio tones. The graceful interplay of the natural versus the artificial is playfully balanced, elegantly fabricating audio-illusions that make Phillips & Jensen's sound an engineering feat that is impossible to ignore. Patra's continuously recycled serenity is sustained and genuine, exuding an aura of rejuvenation that acts as an aural amenity from start to finish.
Los Angeles serves as the ideal cultural and natural arena for such a confluence of gifted musicians like Phillips & Jensen to make a pristine album such as Patra. Continuing the decades old tradition of healing ambient music through electronic tones, this collaboration marks the first of hopefully many exquisite endeavors into Phillips & Jensen's joint psyche.
Very interesting mix of music. As such the best way to describe it is "krautrock" which, of course, means absolutely nothing. It's weird, it's atmospheric and it's excellent. Some ambient, and a few more directly engaging pieces, all excellent. Will