Our year began with our introduction to the music of Noel Brass, Jr., the Seattle-based musician whose “Another Solo Mission” album has been perhaps our most consistent headphone companion throughout 2015. With the curtain being drawn on another year, Brass has unveiled another metaphysical masterpiece, entitled “Zero Utopias and Counting,” and it seems only right to bookend our year with a second salute to this sonic poet.
All the words we wasted in vain, attempting to describe Brass Jr.’s sound, twelve month again remain valid (thought equally pointless). The flight path as described by Brass – “part ambient, part psychedelic, all soul – influenced by early sci-fi soundtracks, film noir, and improvisation” – remains the closest description of reality.
Nothing’s perfect – we join Brass in arriving at a to-date calculation of zero utopias. But the music of Noel Brass, Jr., is as close to perfect as we need anything to be. Highest possible recommendation.
“Zero Utopias and Counting” is available now from Noel Brass Jr.’s Bandcamp page.
“We have been taught to spend our lives chasing our thoughts and projections. Even when the ‘mind’ is talked about, it is only thoughts and emotions that are referred to; and when our researchers study what they imagine to be the mind, they look only at its projections. No one ever really looks into the mind itself, the ground from which all these expressions arise; and this has tragic consequences.” – Sogyal Rinpoche