- Spine-tingling ambient that will tumble around your brain long after the music stops.
- By embracing resonant textures and woozy rhythms, the new album from Philadelphia's Ulla adds another gem to her treasure chest of spine-tingling ambient. An ability to gracefully shift between aesthetics has made her one of the most genre's most exciting artists. From the jazz-inflected Append to the reverb-soaked pads of Big Room and her surreal collaborations with Pontiac Streator, each release adopts an alluring new approach. This means, despite an intensive release schedule that's delivered six albums in the past three years, every project offers a refreshing angle.
Tumbling Towards A Wall is by far Ulla's most crystalized effort yet, with jolty rhythmic patterns that plop into each other like stalactite drips. This percussive push feels like a nod to her frequent collaborators at West Mineral Ltd., who've been sculpting their rich ambient sound since 2018. Despite the stylistic evolutions, the record still feels distinctly Ulla. "something i can't show" highlights the LP's intimate qualities with a wistful melody that reluctantly repeats amidst ebbing electronic blooms. "soak" moves beyond ambient thanks to its nimble clicks. There are many peaks and valleys like this, but every song maintains a certain tenderness. Listening through feels like reading a diary over someone's shoulder, personal and embedded with secrets and references only the writer understands.
Tumbling Towards A Wall is easygoing, right down to the way it dropped. (It was announced the night before its release.) It's also the first physical release from Berlin-based producer uon's ambient label Experiences Ltd., and solidifies the cult of Ulla. There was no need for a multi-week PR spiel or online lead-up—fans have been watching and waiting to see what she did next, so all they needed was a link. As the supple chords of "i think my tears have become good" slowly tumble around your brain, building a listening experience that's simple yet rich, the big picture becomes obvious. Everything Ulla wants to say is hidden in plain sight, right there in the music.
01. new poem
02. leaves and wish
03. something i can't show
05. stunned suddenly
07. feeling remembering
08. i think my tears have become good