Starting out as a netlabel, distributing free releases such as the original Nest EP, Serein took an unexpected sudden turn and resurfaced as a ‘standard’ label.
“Re-Told” – a remastered version (with additional tracks) of the original Nest EP – was their incredible “initial”release and immediately set themselves a difficult high standard.
Re-Told was immediately and widely recognised as a classic release and got sort of legendary status for all those that found it. (To modestly illustrate this: the short review from 2009 has been on top of the ‘most read’ ambientblog list ever since).
(Only) Three other releases have followed since this initial masterpiece – and then, finally, a new Nest release called“Body Pilot” was announced.
For those that did not know yet: Nest is Huw Roberts (Wales, Serein label owner) and Otto Totland (Norway, of Deaf Center fame). They have crafted a unique combination of acoustic piano and electronic ‘sample manipulation’ with additional field recordings.
There are quite a lot of releases in this musical area, crossing over electronic sound art with acoustic post-classical romanticism – but what distinguishes Nest from a lot of other contemporary artist is their ability to create a delicate balance. Their music is sweet – but never too sweet.
To illustrate this: the opening track ‘Stillness’, with its quiet introvert piano theme, is quite different from Koretz’s Meteor, which is mainly electronic and starts with a a SF-like tension that is almost threatening.
Roberts and Totland are not only mastering delicate balance, but also ‘restraint’: the piano parts are effective but modest, and the release only clocks 20 minutes (four tracks).
This may be the only downlside if this release: however fine they are, these delicate 20 minutes only leave us wanting for more.
So let’s hope that it won’t take another five years to see the next Nest release!
“Body Pilot” is released as a 10″ EP, as part of the Serein Seasons 10″ vinyl series. Limited to 500 worldwide – only a few copies left so hurry if you want the physical copy. For those that prefer digital, the music is also available in digital download format (MP3 as well as lossless FLAC).
Nest – The Ultimate Horizon