Dying Machines is the musical alias of New Orleans-based multi-instrumentalist / producer Thomas Buschbach, and this debut download-only EP on Mush Nicht Sprechen sees him exploring a cinematic ambience over its five tracks that’s not completely dissimilar to Eno’s work with pianist Harold Budd. Perhaps most interestingly, Buschbach employs a strict ‘no synthesisers’ approach when constructing his tracks, instead creating his textures by meticulously treating instruments such as guitar, viola and cello.
Opening track ‘This, And Other Times’ introduces the swelling glacial atmospheres that colour this entire EP, as rich layers of brooding yet hopeful strings hang in the background and delicate piano keys trail in the foreground, the entire track floating with a sense of calm warm stillness. The shoegaze-meets-filmscore ‘Await You’ meanwhile sees the melodic keys bleeding slightly more into the foreground against a spectral wash of bass drones and subtle traces of treated violin in what’s easily one of the most melancholic and moments here, while elsewhere ‘As A Day Fades’ takes things back towards prog-tinged ambience as elegant string arrangements trail out over a vaguely psychedelic backdrop of deep drone harmonics. While there’s a slight sense of lack of variation across the five tracks here, on the whole this is an impressive and immersive debut.