Spheruleus – Glimmers
Although pushing a decade of steady releases, Harry Towell’s Spheruleus project has never appeared solo on cassette till now. So, it’s the honour of his new full-length Glimmers to kick things off with James Armstrong’s new tape imprint Rusted Tone Recordings.
With a gentle green/white layout, the tape and sleeves are modestly handsome, while the album’s titular reference to light relates to an overall theme of illumination and optimism. The music begins with ‘First Light’, whose bubbling textures are certainly warm and uplifting. Towell develops a tumbling rhythm gradually, which culminates halfway in with a chopped guitar loop. Guitar is a new addition to Towell’s toolkit; beats and strongly rhythmic loops are another recent development (cf. City Spheres, 2016).
I would have liked to hear more material in this style; after the second track ‘Gaslamp’ things return to a more typically cloudy ‘n’ dreamy ambient style and remain there for the duration. Nonetheless it’s fine stuff – Towell is an experienced composer in this area. ‘Dimly Lit’,
‘Lantern’ and ‘Refraction’ are highlights here, making the most of the guitar in various restful and melancholic drifts. For me they hearken back a fair bit to the ‘Under the Spire’ sound of the late 2000s – very nice.