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  • Nathan Yoder

Album Preview - Tapes and Topographies - A Pulse of Durations

Todd Gautreau, who composes under the moniker Tapes and Topographies, is a prolific ambient artist specializing in the cultivation of cinematic atmospheres which hold the power to envelop the listener in a warm embrace. His past albums Ubiquitous Clouds, Insomnia Drones, Opiates, and Soft Decibels, have titles representative of his sound, and A Pulse of Durations (out this Friday on Past Inside the Present), captures a similar aesthetic, but comes from a different place.


Influenced by classic film, and borrowing a Scott Walker lyric from the 60's for an album title (!) , Gautreau explains that on this new release, he attempted to strip things down to find beauty in core ideas, instead of over-embellishing tracks. Indeed, there seems to be a sense of simplicity present throughout the album, as Gautreau uses synth tones and light instrumentation to create peaceful drones. Opener, Moonboard, holds an interesting air of improvisation, and later track, Somnolence, flutters like eyes during REM sleep, but on each wave of the album, it feels like the artist is focused on capturing pure moments. Sonic threads never spiral too high. Instead, Gautreau zeroes in on the base of each mood. The entire Tapes and Topographies catalogue is worth exploring, but this Friday, make sure to find a quiet space for A Pulse of Durations - a beautiful listen and calming respite.