Let’s start the week with another in the ever-growing catalog of Buddha Machine”“infused ambient projects. This one, the full-length album Complex Silence 2, by Gordon MacMillan (under the name Tange), provides two half-hour transits into meditative space. The album consists of a complementary pairing of ancient and modern. Track one (MP3) takes as its source material prayer bowls, and track two (MP3) the of-the-moment descendant of sonic ritual tools, the Buddha Machine (a series of short loops housed in a cheap plastic box).
Both tracks unfold as rapture-on-slo-mo: thin layers of casually ecstatic sound that don’t seem to get any louder, even as you turn up the volume. The key distinguishing characteristic is that the prayer-bowl piece includes the percussive sound of a bell being struck, while the Buddha Machine piece is endlessly soft. Kudos to MacMillan for keeping both tracjs free of space-music cliche, and for making a Buddha track in which the now familiar loops manage to get lost.