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Barn Owl: Show Preview 

Wednesday, Apr 3 2013

Barn Owl has long been known among fans of drone and ambient music for serene, towering textures of electric guitar and synthesizer, as well as extended compositions suggesting vast natural landscapes. The San Francisco duo's newest album, V, shifts the sound subtly but decidedly, favoring a darker, more dystopic palette of electronic sounds. Barn Owl hasn't exactly gone trap, but careful listeners will notice throbbing buttresses of bass and, in a few places, the barest outlines of a beat, hinting at newfound dub and minimal techno influences. The result is more vivid and somewhat more urgent — but don't come expecting to dance: Barn Owl's music is still like a watercolor image melting in the rain, with sonic colors slowly smearing together. The hues are just a bit deeper and darker now.

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Ian S. Port

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