The Light Pleasures of Dark Drones (MP3)

“Nicely ominous” — perhaps no other phrase can so well sum up the conflicting emotional effects of a well-crafted drone. Those words were part of a comment a few days ago, responding to a track by Hoist at

Appropriately titled “Bleakscape,” the track is a lightly meandering, slowly circulating drone that doesn’t so much progress linearly as seap outward as time progresses. It could be the sound of an infant’s crib-mobile slowed to an extreme. It could be the score to a planetarium installation, each newly introduced sound timed to the appearance of a star.

Throughout, this undercurrent of tension, a tremulous if distant rumbling, is set against the glints that comprise the most prominent aspects of the composition. It’s quite a lovely thing, overall, in particular how the various different elements change how your ear perceives the work’s pacing.

Hoist is Boston, Massachusetts”“based Charlie Hoistman.

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