And It Was So

Guitars – whether electric, acoustic, distorted, or processed beyond recognition – have long been the hallmark of the Talvihorros sound, particularly on his most well-known release to date, “Descent Into Delta.”  But with the expansive album “And It Was So,” Ben Chatwin, the driving mind behind Talvihorros, seems to be hellbent on making that description obsolete with a multi-faceted approach that embeds percussion, strings, and chiming loops into his brooding drones.  He gets help from the Denovali enclave of musicians (Petrels on cello and Field Rotation on violin) that results in songs that take on a post-rock aesthetic, especially the ominous “Creeping Things” and eleven minute opener “Let There Be Light.”  Everything that made Talvihorros a frequented name on experimental music websites is still here in spades, it’s just augmented with keener arrangements and a richer palette. – Ryan Potts, Experimedia

Talvihorros / Damian Valles
Moments and Ruins


This new split on the Textura label brings together UK-based composer, Talvihorros (aka Ben Chatwin), and Canadian Damien Valles for a lush set of spacious experimentalism.  Talvihorros opens with the strings-and-crunch-laden “From Within A Hollow Body (Part I).”  It’s a heartbreakingly beautiful piece of work as layer-upon-layer of cascading sound is built into something massive and overbearing.  It is music rife with tension, holding onto the ledge tighter and tighter until there’s nothing left to do but let go and free fall into oblivion.  ”From Within A Hollow Body (Part II)” is like being lost in a black expanse, unable to perceive any depth or passage of time.  Enchanted by Chatwin’s carefully chosen, scraped-up guitar notes, you flutter through the air, lost in endless space.  This is subtley dark, beautiful music.  Valles keeps the momentum churning by blowing all of Chatwin’s ideas to bits and pieces with “Hollow Earth Theory.”  It’s the perfect recipe.  If Talvihorros built the monument, Valles is immortalizing the ruins.  Graveyard dirges of scraped strings and discordant, sporadic piano notes crawl through the black dirt, digging in deeper as they go.  The lower the piece gets, the heavier Valles plays his hand.  As everything builds to a gloriously organic crescendo in this incredibly detailed piece, Valles smothers the last bit of life out with an ominous drone. - Brad Rose