Borderland UK – Safe Passage

Here is another review for “Safe Passage,” from Borderland UK

I’m not actually sure whether Safe Passage is music as we know it. The ten tracks on the album are soundscapes made up of location recordings, special effects, editing and audio treatments. Having said that I found the album a fascinating document of modern life and the systems that cocoon us throughout it. J.C.Combs is more of an audio sculpturist, and I imagine that these ten tracks work best in a museum or exhibition space with some sort of corresponding video accompaniment. While listening to the CD I was reminded constantly of the old BBC Radiophonic and Sound Effect library discs that were so popular back in the 70s and 80s. But in this instance the sounds have been collated to tell a story or create an image in your head. Many of the tracks are quite short, sort of fragments caught on the ether, while others are longer and have more substance – some even have a psychedelic hue to them. A central core that runs throughout are the sounds of the city and that of the transit systems carrying people through its veins. Track titles include Rikke’s Harbor, Cross Station, Dispatch, November 13, 2009, Abysmal, The Giant Eye of the 5th Dimension, X503, Unrelated, Safe Passage and Trinity 666 – The Last Train To Hell. I find myself playing Safe Passage quite frequently, hearing new sounds and collages with each listen. This is the soundtrack to exactly what I am not sure, but working out that is part of the fun of this album.

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