Another Sombre Soniks release and this time it's from the man behind the label himself. 'Dreamtime' is based on the interesting concept of composing and creating music while half asleep. He forced himself to wake up at irregular hours in the middle of the night to compose for maximum one hour. Makes for a nice surprise to listen back to them the next morning I think! 'Dreamtime' features 4 tracks based on this method, as well as 2 extra tracks. 'Woodland Retreat' is based around a field recording using a microphone in a tree, as well as various ritualistic and shamanic intstruments. 'A Soundtrak For Dream States' finally, is composed to enhance dream workings. Before I continue this review I have to say that to me it seems odd to use the 'Woodland Retreat' track on this release because conceptually and sonically it feels out of place from the rest of the tracks. I'll focus on the 'dream' tracks first..
As 'Dreamtime' demonstrates, the results from composing in the early (or late) hours of day can produce some varied results. While opener 'Eskatologikal Edukation' is a noisy soundscape with processed vocals, glitchy electronics and machine-like scrapings and rattles, the next track 'HypGnosis' is a completely different affair. A much dreamier and prettier synth-based drone/ambient track. Dare I say it almost borders on the new age side of ambient? 'Interwoven Signals' and 'Neural.Networking pt2' are more in the same vein as the opening track, although the latter is much more light and airy, while the others are much darker and broodier. Still very glitchy and noisy though. 'A Soundtrak For Dream States', finally, is much more minimal. Which is probably best since it is designed not to interfere with the sleep itself. In a way, it is very much like the Henrik 'Nordvargr' Björkk project 'Sleep Therapy'. If it actually works I don't know because I haven't tried it yet. I did try the Henrik Björkk project for a week though and I didn't really notice anything. Not sure if Akoustik Timbre Frekuency manages to create results but it remains a nice concept nonetheless. I'll give it a go some time.
Which leaves us with the 'Woodland Retreat' track. As I said above, it feels very much out of place conceptually. What it is, is an interesting piece of field recording. Very ritualistic and rhythmic. Certainly not hard to imagine a couple of folks using their various acoustic instruments in a forest. How much of it is processed afterwards I don't know but it feels organic and acoustic. It ends a bit too abruptly for my liking and ideally I would've like to see this detached from the 'Dreamtime' album and further developed into a similar concept album. As it is now it detracts from the rest of the tracks.
As a whole 'Dreamtime' is a nice album which should appeal to a lot of fans of ritualistic dark ambient. Shame about the conceptual mismatch of one track but all in all a very solid release.