To me, Mood Organ has this Philip K. Dickian vibe of like some kind of biofeedback machine to make you a better human. And the music does indeed live up to that concept, because on this release Mood Organ- aka Timm Mason- makes a close study of close sound via ambient drones, hypnagogic field recordings, and lyrical guitar work. Initially, the music seemed a bit too understated, but each listen revealed more of Mason’s fine craftsmanship at work.
If a mood organ did exist the opening track would be the device tuning up and beginning to hum. It’s a study comprised of two or three extended tones. There will be a lengthy pause before one note leapfrogs over the others and the picture changes. Each tone has its own microtonal flutter flapping wings at its own rate. Layered together, a few simple tones begin to shimmer and move elliptically. In a split second the climax of the piece also serves as its sudden termination.
Now we’re hearing a delicate whine, a twinkling melodic pattern, and distant waves. By the end of the composition the ocean has been replaced by a gentle bath of white noise. The transition is subtle and the handoff hard to pinpoint. A pensive guitar improvisation offset by cloudy ambience follows. The album concludes with bells and the sound of rain on canvas (reminding that all things wet do not sound alike- think of the big blue sea droning along vs. a patter of droplets). “Visiting a Burning Museum” sounds nothing like immolated history but produces a quiet catharsis all its own. 8/10 -- Mike Pursley (14 January, 2010)