Lost Ark is a group that has been around since 1999 and they have been creating music that doesn’t abide by many restrictions at all. They recently released a genre-bending EP called Snow, which contains some of the most unique combination of sounds and transitions that I have heard. The music is largely electronic but they often blend in organic instrumentation as well as to create balanced compositions.
I enjoyed the subdued very feminine sounding female vocals as well as the male counterpart but they never felt as important to me as the music. In fact, the vocals sometimes felt separate from the music. It’s almost as if they were too dry at points or needed to be properly compressed. That being said more often than not I enjoyed the vocal parts.
The EP starts out with the title track “The Snow.” An electronic beat trudges through atmospheric ethereal pads and reminded me of a lone outdoorsman walking his way across Antarctica. As the music progresses it opens up and takes unexpected twists and turns. Layers of synths are added and left me anticipating the next track. My anticipation was fulfilled because the next track “Qengaruk” is a fantastic track that takes the compositional skills and experimentation to the next level. The track is almost ten minutes long and goes in so many unexpected places during those ten minutes that I had to listen to it again. One of the focal points of the song is the distorted guitar that gets swarmed with electronic elements. I knew I was listening to some inspired material when at around the 4:00 minute mark the entire composition sounded as if it started melting. Everything became slightly detuned and then even more out of left field was the polka style bass line that completely threw me for a loop.
“A Simple Life” crams in about as many sounds as possible without sounding like a complete mess. This song also has one of the catchiest vocal melodies and goes from a seemingly carefree almost cute electronic composition to jarring, detached sounds to a circus of sounds that are in a constant state of transition.The EP closes with “Ground Zero,” which is another girthy track that lasts almost ten minutes. Within minutes the music may make you feel slightly dizzy. The sounds bend, are sometimes uncomfortable and are absolutely worth it.
The music on Snow is great but the vocals could use some work. Overall, the EP won me over just because of the attention to detail and the fact that the music sounds unique and original.
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