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Tim Dwyer/Off Land’s Guitar-Infused MP3 Album

After several listens through the eight tracks on Encounter Point by Off Land (aka Tim Dwyer), set your MP3 player to a minute or so prior to the end of the album’s final track. There will have been several listens already, because this mix of quiet soundscapes and occasional bits of guitar and spoken soundbites is a carefully constructed collection that invites repetition. For example, the earlier “Trail” opens like a duet for piano and distant helicopter, before invoking a nodding little beat and some water-drop percussives (MP3). And “Colloquy” uses tantalizingly plucked strings to invoke a kind of pixel plectrum (MP3), while on “Evident” the more traditional strumming brings to mind Syd Barrett-era Pink Floyd (MP3).

That final track is titled “Places” and if you do opt to jump in midway, you’ll be surprised as the background percussion and swelling orchestration rolls through like the score to some summer blockbuster — moments earlier, weren’t piano keys playing against singsong tones? The inherent surprise is evidence of Dwyer’s talent: For all the seeming ease of Encounter Point, it’s actually a fairly tumultuous affair — there’s a lot lurking beneath its sedate surface.

Get the full set at the netlabel restingbell.net.

By Marc Weidenbaum

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