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Weightless by Marconi Union

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MARCONI UNION: Weightless (Ambient Transmissions Volume 2) (CD on Just Music)

This release from 2014 features 42 minutes of melodic ambience.

Marconi Union is: Richard Talbot and Jamie Crossley.

Swarms of textural tones blend with dreamy electronics to craft easy-going tuneage.

The atmospheric elements of this music are quite pronounced. The sonic mood is sedate, calm and crisp. Pulsating waves of fragile drones establish vaporous foundations for additional electronics, from thumping bass notes to twinkling chimes to fluid oscillations.

Additional electronics are provided in a steady dose, from wavering fogs to looping spirals to crystalline sighs to gentle xylophonic hints to softly growling sustains to delicate piano expressions to lightly plucked guitars to piercing diodes...from soft to hard, a diversity of sounds goes into generating this alluring music.

Believe it or not, percussion plays a factor in this extremely soothing music. Languid rhythms accompany a few pieces, lending a minor degree of locomotion to the pacific flow.

These compositions are clearly dreamy and mellow, but they also possess a solid melodic presence. Instead of relying on just textural electronics, the band embellishes things with definite keyboard riffs and even sultry tempos, producing tunes that are as rich with substance as they are sparsely crafted.

As a curious scientific side bar, when the first track on this album was tested at the Mindlab Institute by a sound therapist from the British Academy of Sound Therapy, the results indicated that listening to the song actually slowed heart rate, reduced blood pressure and decreased levels of cortisol, a steroid hormone that is released in response to stress. The matter even earned the track a mention in Time Magazine. The band members offer no comment in relation to this finding, preferring that the music be judged for its sonic value.

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