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If with his 2015 EP Axioms, Throwing Snow aka Ross Tones had already convincingly demonstrated his talent for channeling organic processes in his music, his follow-up album, Embers, brings this ability to perfection. Like his debut, 2014’s Mosaic, Embers is released via Fabric’s Houndstooth, and while Tones has been active since 2007, it is those releases that have been clearly shaping his aesthetic as a producer.
Recorded in County Durham, Tones merged sounds captured in the surrounding area with his synthesizers and drum machines, emblematising the endless cycles occurring in nature. Starlings are silhouetted against the beatless arrangement of ‘Allegory’, the crackling rain of the opening ‘Cantor's Dust Part 1’ evolves into trembling white noise, and ‘Helical’s’ ever-morphing arpeggios administer a propulsive drive, mirroring this continuity. Tones even extends this concept to the medium, with the double vinyl created in a way so that the listener can mix the album without breaks across two turntables. His characteristic minor melodies create tension by resolving dissonant intervals to consonant chords – sawtooth-style deep frequency synths (‘Klaxon’) and hard-hitting percussion (‘Recursion’) at times add a menacing, urgent feel. Emblem is electronic rock of epic proportions, sounding the universe’s infinity as adequately as humanly imaginable.