Vancouver-based singer/composer Ian William Craig returns after an 18-month layoff with his stunningly beautiful, atmospheric and hypnotic new album, Thresholder. Following on from 2014’s hidden gem, A Turn of Breath and 2016’s much-lauded Centres, Thresholder is the Canadian’s third studio album and continues with his idiosyncratic and distinctive sound that layers a series of tape deck loops over choral vocals and grainy, smeared textures. Like his previous output, Thresholder explores a beautifully raw, smudged and fractured soundscape that conveys emotion and thought so deeply and directly. Engulfed in blankets of fuzz, static, crackles and reverb,
Thresholder feels wonderfully amorphous and free, drifting among hazy, ethereal structures that appear to have no form. Yet, Craig anchors the record with an almost invisible foundation of analogue current and his brilliantly manipulated vocals. His classicallytrained, choral vocals, so central to his music, flood the record with emotions. Manipulated and looped through machines, his stunning voice interplays with those fuzzy, fragile layers of tape deck decay and gently humming machine sounds to create a record so personal and intimate that it remains deeply moving from start to finish. The record is melancholic, but with gushes of light and warmth rushing in, raising up through the central arc of the album. It’s colder, darker extremities are the breeding ground for surges of raw, emotional energy and soul to overtake your consciousness. A record of rare beauty and artistry, Thresholder confirms Craig’s place as a true innovator of contemporary music.