Out now on Esoteric Antenna Ostinato is described as “a labour of love, built on forty years’ vision’ with Tayler commenting “I had so many ideas for music and sound running around inside my head as a teenager, and now, more than forty years on, technology has evolved to the point where I can realise this vision, as if the outer world and my inner music have finally synchronised, and the production of this album has at last made this possible.”

I’d personally never heard of Tayler but he is a mixing and recording engineer, music producer, musician, composer and sound engineer and has contributed towards the work of loads of names you will most certainly have heard – Peter Gabrial, Suzanne Vega, Underworld, Howard Jones, Stevie Nicks, Rush…STEPHENWTAYLER

Ostinato is at times a bleak and minimal outing, which sort of falls into the ambient category of electronica and is clearly influenced by the likes of Steve Reich and Philip Glass with a bit of Tangerine Dream thrown in for good measure perhaps a bit of Sabres Of Paradise. Ostinato opens with Euro Star which is driving, percussive and, well it sounds a bit like a train headed for France under the channel. Actually this is a pretty full on track and would be perfectly at home on the dancefloor of some more adventurous clubs. It does a brilliant job of creating the scene and leaves you barely daring to take a breath.
At The Edge Of Light is a soundscape and cinematic piece with piano over the top and reminds me of some of the proggy ambient albums I listened to as a kid (Pekka Pohjola’s Mathematician’s Air Display perhaps). It’s a beautiful piece whatever and builds and builds to a beautiful ending.

Next up is Periphique, then Terminus, On The Beach, Glass In The Rain, Sacre Couer, Metro and finally The Boy Who Said Yes, and reading the titles you’d be forgiven for thinking that this whole album wasn’t knocked up on the annual family holiday to France. Ok, I know you’ve got to have a theme or albums can be disjointed and I actually quite like this. The vocoded (or whatever it is) on Periphique is great and puts me in mind of something I’ve heard but can’t quite put my finger on. Metro is the highlight for me with its sequenced synth bassline that is pounding and utterly brilliant…

You know the influences and if you like that style you’ll like this album, but it will also appeal to the techno generation as it’s just got enough bite and hardness to it to not have it drifting off into mindless electronic noodling and navel gazing that can sometimes result from this broad genre.

Ostinato is brilliantly produced, sounds wonderful, and whilst it is certainly intelligent music, it is not up its own backside and pretty accessible to most folk. I really enjoyed it and it’s definitely a keeper that will get played in the wee hours of psychedelic reverie, where it will be allowed to wash over mind and body.

Highly recommended…just a bit dubious about the track titles…

Stuart Smith

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