- Bibio has tried his hand at a number of styles, from poppy electronica to the kind of sun-dappled boom-bap made famous by Boards Of Canada, but he's never on better form than when working with a palette of smeary vocals, acoustic guitars and gossamer synths. On The Green EP, a collection of both new and old songs, he taps into the rich vein of ambient electroacoustic folk found on last year's Silver Wilkinson. The results are often devastating.
"Dinghy" is little more than melody buried in analogue murk, while tape hiss and recordings of the sea alloy poignant vocals and acoustic guitar on "Down To The Sound." The echo chamber instrumental "Carbon Wulf" (a reprise of Silver Wilkinson's "Wulf") is a particular highlight, its reverbed guitar lines at once grand and intimate. Elsewhere, vocals are clearer, though still shrouded in reverb on "Dye the Water Green." An electric guitar gives some weight to its quietly soaring hook, wistful countermelodies and fuzzy drums before it tapers off, leaving you at a loss.
There's a fleeting quality to Bibio's compositions that makes them feel like vignettes. "A Thousand Syllables" is a case in point, opening with a string passage that fades into near-silence before the acoustic guitar and soft vocals enter and the song becomes something else entirely. Many of the songs on The Green EP, though unreleased, predate Silver Wilkinson, but they sit well with the newer tracks, such as the closing instrumental "The Spinney View of Hinkley Point," where a clatter of live drums feels pleasantly raw after all the preceding delicate textures.
A1 Dye The Water Green
B Down To The Sound