Every great album, no matter what genre, will tell a story, there will be a consistent theme that flows through each song, from the beginning to the end. Phonothek’s Lost in Fog is a great example a great story told through an album. From the very beginning, in “Old Swings” you get a sense of impending dread, you are welcomed into a world where life has left, and even though there is nothing truly living in this desolate world, there is something out there, something out in the fog that surrounds you as the music continues. You can feel yourself being dragged into a world that was once full of life, joy, and happiness, but something dreadful happened, something unspeakable. There are scars in the landscape. The sounds are off, there is something strange happening in the fog, something sinister yet still alluring. This is the music, the sound of this world is perfectly capture by the duo of Phonothek. They have created something here that is beautiful and catchy, yet malignant and threatening at the same time. The first time I listened to the album, I felt as though I was walking through the remains of Chernobyl, a place once so full of life, snuffed out and home to ghosts and things worse than ghosts now. The music adds a beautiful melancholy that tugs at the heart, nature herself is in pain and crying out, but there is no one left to hear her cries and pleas for help. She is alone, the fog is a beast, an unnatural force that seeks to consume all the life that remains, to sap out hope, emotion, and light. We trudge through the broken landscapes, looking at sad blighted trees that reach up to a sun that cannot give it’s light to the earth anymore. Everything has been washed away in devastation. We are lost. We cannot go home.
This is the story I feel the music is telling me, one of the great things about ambient that cannot be found in any other genre is that the story can be different for each person that hears it, the beautiful tonal sounds that Phonothek offers tug at us in different ways, we feel this music, this sound differently, our minds are effected differently.
I highly recommend this album, the last few days in Hobbs have been in sweltering heat and humidity yet when I listen to this album, I don’t feel quite so connected here as with the world inside the music, the world the album takes me. I believe that is was every album should do to its listeners, take them away from this world and put them in another, force them to change their perspective, their belief so that when they return to the real world they are changed. Music is beauty and change, if it is not, then it is worthless. Lost in Fog is a portal to desolation and misery, desperation and blight. This album has changed me. It will change you as well.
Listen and support this beautiful music!