Album Reviews

Mathew Roth – The Vulture & The Sparrow – Album Review


Mathew Roth – The Vulture & The Sparrow – Album Review by Killian Laher

New York composer Mathew Roth has just released this, his latest work The Vulture & The Sparrow. Opening track An Overture of Ice, a stately, piano led piece gives the listener an idea as to how the rest of the album will sound. Some particularly fetching violin is prominent on this one. The moody Patterns of Decay has more of a classical feel to it, and along with Looking Glass take the collection in a wintry direction. The chill is particularly prevalent on the chamber post-rock of Endless Horizons, with its ringing guitars fading gradually, to be replaced by violin and piano.

Sophisticated, stately pieces such as Insistent of Rain and Awakened by Frost feature deft, melodic turns of phrase. Little touches all over this album reveal themselves over multiple listens, the creeping keyboard swells on Bones We Clung To, the cellos on Hollow Seeds, and the strings which envelope each other on the title track to devastating effect. This would all collapse in on itself without Roth’s piano which underpins everything. No track outstays its welcome, sticking to the 4-5 minute mark. Towards the end Emergence might be the finest thing here, it’s almost a lullaby with mostly unadorned piano throughout the piece. A pretty exquisite album, if a little on the lengthy side. Worth investigating for anyone partial to a bit of Nils Frahm or the more classical side of Peter Broderick, but more accessible than either.

Track List:

1. An Overture of Ice
2. Patterns of Decay
3. Looking Glass
4. Insistent of Rain
5. Those Who Sank
6. Bones We Clung To
7. Endless Horizons
8. Awakened By Frost
9. Hollow Seeds
10. Emergence
11. The Vulture & The Sparrow
12. Notwithstanding








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