This is a review of "This Geography Of Ours" recorded by Sierpinski. The review was written by Sam Saunders in 2002.
Waclaw Sierpinski was a Polish mathematician whose name has been given to a beautifully simple but many layered pattern called the Sierpinski Triangle. Sierpinksi is the name adopted by a group of four Leeds musicians with international standing and a serious future ahead of them Clare Loughran, Lee Hooper, Mathew Robson and Christian Townsley.
Their new album "this geography of ours", however you listen to it, is simply a magnificent recording. Issued by Phil Norman's astute and very collectable Jonathon Whiskey label, it contains nine pieces. Between two and a half and seven minutes each, they move with a consistently serene and delicious melancholy. Each piece at a time brings its own musical world with complex textures, subtle dynamics and wonderfully open harmonic shapes.
At times they sound like affectionate friends improvising gently around a central figure that passes from one instrument to another - piano, guitar, bass and drums (oh, and bowed glockenspiel too). At times the programmer's craft weaves samples, ambience and synth sounds into sparklingly singular mood pieces. Everywhere these aspects blend naturally and confidently. Changes keep on ringing. The listener's imagination can move through as many worlds as there are triangles in Sierpinski's fractal.
The upright bass is a glorious warm heart in a music that is immediately accessible and intensely rich. Play it over and over, and be surprised at every turn at deeper and deeper levels of subtlety. This is no fringe music for people who only listen with their right brain, living in hope of being the new intelligentsia. This is brilliantly engaging music that knows it has something important to convey. Don't be nervous. It will treat you gently.
Whatever else you like (even you crazy rawk kids), buy this CD as soon as you can, and let it fondle your goose bumps whenever you need the chill.