The artist Ziur‘s name suddenly isn’t so retro-futuristic when your realize it’s just the last name of the musician it masks flipped around. That would be Braga, Portugal-based André Ruiz, whose album Granular World was recently released on the XS netlabel (xsrecordsptnetlabel.blogspot.com). The album takes for its cover art an image from the first landing, 40 years back, of humans on the moon. The intended association is that Ziur, too, journeys to familiar yet exotic and distant places. That’s borne out by the seven tracks on Granular World, which investigates tiny sonic spaces with an intrepid spirit that suggests bravura even when the overall audio effect is infinitesimal. A key example is “Granular II,” a harrowing if Lilliputian journey amid cracking noise and deep echoes (MP3), and through the mournful melodic twists of “In to the Light,” in which a single, almost voice-like sound can be heard making its way through the a valley of droning tones (MP3).