Alex Cobb, the gentleman behind Taiga Remains, originally released ?Ribbons of Dust? as a trilogy of 3? CDRs on his own Students of Decay label awhile back. Root Strata has now compiled this massive study in dronelogy on a single CD, packaged in a handsome letterpressed sleeve.
Much of ?Ribbons of Dust? has been aptly reviewed in these pages previously, from the ?freeflowing waves of bliss? of the opening suite to the ?troubled peacefulness? of the middle section. On the final suite of the album, the longest at just under twenty-four minutes, Cobb conjures up another ominous dronescape with his electric guitar and myriad of effects. Layer upon layer of processed tones weave throughout the sound spectrum and swell, at times, to a near threshold level. Perhaps the most striking aspect of ?Ribbons of Dust?, as a whole, is the way in which it transforms as a listening experience. Listen to it on a pair of headphones and it?s wondrously meditative; whereas, placed on a stereo system with a slight twist of the volume knob and these same drones sound as if they will devour a living space altogether. With repeated listens, nuances emerge from the layers of sound and fragments of melody slowly reveal themselves.
While Cobb described Taiga Remains as essentially a bedroom project, it?s astounding just how texturally rich and orchestral ?Ribbons of Dust? sounds. It begs to be heard in large performance spaces and this release should certainly be sought out by anyone with even a passing interest in drone music. 8/10 -- David Perron (18 June, 2008)