What does it sound like?:
This two cd set is a reissue of this 1987 album, comprising numerous pieces recorded by Bill Nelson between 1980 and 1987. The remastered edition comprises the original two cds, The Angel At The Western Window and The Book Of Inward Conversation. Both are supplemented by bonus tracks – Angel has no less than thirteen pieces drawn from the 1988 cd version, which weren’t on the original vinyl lp, while Book gets a further eight tracks taken from the limited edition ep originally included with first pressings of the album.
The pieces are mainly in the ambient/experimental vein and were recorded in Nelson’s home studio. There seems to be no overarching theme here, rather the music is a series of vignettes and snapshots of where the artist was at the time. Some tracks are quite Eno like, others feature vocal loops, and synths are to the fore overall with relatively little guitar in comparison. These short tracks do tend to blend one into the next after a while, and there’s often no real distinction between where one ends and the next begins unless you’re paying particularly close attention. There are no real stand out tracks as such – indeed, this is quite a homogenous album, inventive with some truly beautiful pieces working really well while others come and go without really amounting to anything much. It is quite an intriguing and evocative listen though, showcasing as it does the full extent of the inventive quirkiness of Nelson’s muse.
What does it all *mean*?
This is the sort of album you don’t need to listen to in sequence from start to end – just kick it off anywhere and let it play, ideally as background accompaniment to some other activity.
Goes well with…
An evening of introspection.
Might suit people who like…
Nelson’s other instrumental works, new age, ambient, experimental music.