We don’t wanna suspect a marketing strategy behind this – but being away as artist for more than just the usual two or three years might not be the worst idea to create a certain buzz. And if they are gone for almost a decade you can almost guarantee the hype. DAVID BOWIE, THE POSTAL SERVICE and – most famously – DAFT PUNK have all been there in 2013. Michael Sandison and Marcus Eoin are the next in line, releasing the first BOARDS OF CANADA album since eight years. And, of course, for this event the Scottish duo chose mysterious white labled promo vinyls, undefined video clips and bizarre codes prior to the release of Tomorrow’s Harvest. Well, okay, this really looks like a promotional strategy.
BOARDS OF CANADA like it cryptical, it’s always been that way. Their laid back downtempo electronica with slices of IDM and ambient always created songs that were bigger than the two musicians themselves. Experimental electronic landscapes out of normal structure and concepts, filled with sounds, atmosphere and samples. BOARDS OF CANADAA have been the blueprint for acts like BURIAL or NOSAJ THING. Music that sounded so easy although it was quite complex below its surface. Tomorrow’s Harvest does nothing more (but also nothing less) than continuing the tradition and pick up were the two Scots left us with their last album The Campfire Headphase.
17 tracks in 60 minutes, including a lot of interludes – Tomorrow’s Harvest is a journey into the unknown. Right after the spooky intro Gemini, the epic Reach For The Dead unfolds wide open space sounds and clicking beats. A concept you’ll find throughout the whole longplayer. The diverted beats of Jacquard Causeway create more bizarre scenarios while ambient patterns of tracks like Palace Posy or Cold Earth beam you into downtempo heaven. The flow of these tracks always gets interrupted by short experimental and ambient-like interludes like Telepath and Uritual, remaining only sketches rather than fully evolved tracks.
Tomorrow’s Harvest is full of such such sketches and ideas, BOARDS OF CANADA serve a quite complex meal you might have to listen to more than just once to maybe understand it. Some people might even find the record boring. This whole concept of flowing sounds – well, it’s also a bit soporific and exhausting. It’s not simple easy-listening lounge pop, Eoin and Sandison celebrate the unspecific and challenging listening experience. At the end it is quite unsure if they succeeded. At least, in the worst case, we have eight years time to find out.