Rebecca Brandt - Numbers & Shapes
This month's selection was an easy one. Numbers & Shapes is composer and musician Rebecca Brandt's debut album and it mixes together various acoustic, electric and synthetic instruments. The album blends a variety of genres, with each song sounding unique and ranging from a solo piano piece to the post-rock-esque cut à la something like Godspeed You! Black Emperor at the album's conclusion, featuring a 32-piece orchestra. Numbers, patterns and different concepts of music theory were large inspirations in writing this album, as were the ideas of shapes, contours, and builds.
At times melodic, sometimes dissonant, the music conveys a variety of moods and seldom fails to capture with its beauty. I find the album easy to get into, but the music's seeming simplicity often hides its actually quite complex nature beneath the surface. I've heard this album being compared to video game soundtracks (in a positive sense), and in a way I can see why someone would draw such a comparison, although in my eyes the music is still much closer to certain branches of contemporary classical. The sound is OK, but in some places during louder sections I hear what I assume to be digital clipping. This is unfortunate, but hardly a deal breaker.
And let me tell ya, this album is a really sweet deal. Like most things on Bandcamp, you can stream it for free in its entirety on the site, but in addition to that this particular album is a name-your-price release. This means if you enter zero as the price you can download it for absolutely free in the format of your choice (Apple Lossless, FLAC, AAC, Ogg Vorbis or MP3). If you do enjoy the music however, I do recommend donating even a nominal amount to show the artist your support and to give her warm fuzzy feelings by letting her know you appreciate her work. In addition a CD release limited to 500 copies is also available for the minimum price of $5 plus shipping. I have the CD myself and it is easily more than worth its asking price even when you factor in the shipping costs.
Hope you enjoy. See you in December!