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LAB REPORT. CLASSICAL ATMOSPHERES CD (SELF-RELEASED)

Image of LAB REPORT. CLASSICAL ATMOSPHERES CD (SELF-RELEASED)

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BRAINWASHED SAID:

Lab Report is Chicago area artist and musician Matthew Schultz. "Classical Atmospheres" is his 6th full length album in 9 years, the 2nd of which is entirely self realized and released through his own web site ($12 shipped from labreport.com). Lab Report's music delves into menacing, soundtrack style industrial soundscapes and ambiance via Schultz's "anti-tank guitar" invention, field recordings and samples. With "Classical Atmospheres", as one might assume from the title, Schultz explores classical themes in 5 of the 16 tracks while the rest are more similar to past Lab Report work, as well as other strange new sounds. "Bombastic One" and "Bombastic Finale" are proud miniature orchestras, the former augmented by the somewhat out of place electric guitar soloing of American Records' Johnny Polonsky. "Sad and Somewhat Intoxicated", "Soundtrack Standard" and "Horns and Strings" are brief but beautiful classically minded piano, violin and string/horn pieces, respectively. "The Chase" is a surprising bit of uptempo, metallic rhythm fueled film noir soundtrack that might make Barry Adamson smile. "Dun Dun" is a playful cartoon like loop that, as the insert itself describes, 'becomes irritating' (each track is accompanied by a brief description and b/w photo). The remainder of the album are the ambient/found sound pieces ... drones, washes, hums, thumps, banging and clanging ... all of which are as good if not better than past work. "Introduction" (with additional guitar by Dirty's Tom Slattery) is especially eerie. These tracks are not simply random noises, they are intentional emotive environments. Altogether, "Classical Atmospheres" is Schultz's most successful and challenging (for both the artist and listener) work to date. The balance between old and new sounds and styles works very well and Schultz, as an artist, continues to remain unpredictable and independently push himself forward ...