Soft Circle is the project of Hisham Bharoocha, former Black Dice drummer, and I have to say that it's a wonderful project, too. His music is drone, but unlike his former group, his drone isn't based in the electronic noise of the Twentieth Century; it's the sound of ancient musics and instruments. Unlike his previous band, his music is tranquil, quiet, and meditative. Now, I know some people who find Black Dice to be soothing, and some of their music is quiet, but Soft Circle is a wholly other dimension of sound.
Thankfully, Full Bloom never overloads your eardrums with high decibel-level noise. When Hisham does get loud, he's not trying to imitate the sound you'd hear if you stand next to a jet engine. Instead, he's trying to capture some sort of postmodern tribal new wave native bonfire ritual that will make you dance. It's not hippy-dippy rave electronica, but it's close; the groove of "Earthed" sounds a lot like the grooves found in early-90s Wax Trax releases; specifically, Greater Than One, but I'm not trying to be pedantic. Other songs, like "Shimmer" and "Whirl," sound like a 21st Century take on World Music; heck, if they were so labeled, I'd believe these were Mickey Hart recordings.
Overall, Full Bloom is a beautiful trip in a sonic world that beautifully mixes drone and tribal sounds. My interest in Hisham's music is definitely piqued; this recording is beautiful, and I anxiously await his next record.
Listen To: "Shimmer"
Full Bloom is available now from Eastern Developments
Labels: Eastern Developments, Reviews S, Soft Circle