Lexicon of Sound: Hypnagogia review – Ambient pleasures

Dubliner Colm Fitzpatrick eschews his indie roots for music of rumbling atmosphere

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Artist: Lexicon of Sound
Genre: Electronic
Label: Lighthouse Records

Some musicians just get on with it, caring little about what commercial rewards might come their way should their music be synced to movies or television shows or played on radio stations around the world. Not so Dubliner Colm Fitzpatrick. Nerd aficionados of the Irish music scene might recall his name – or if they don’t then certainly the outfits he was once a member of. Between bands such as Hey Paulette and The Sewing Room (the title of whose 1997 second album, Sympathy for the Dishevelled, deserves a pun of the week award), Fitzpatrick was a constituent part of a particular Irish indie sound that is still fondly remembered and influential.

For the past several years, however, he has been sequestered in his home studio, forgoing indie for ambient music, releasing a series of albums under a telling if enigmatic moniker. Hypnagogia is Lexicon of Sound’s fifth album (there are nine, all of which are to be released on CD for the first time this and next year), and to say it creates a rumbling atmosphere is an understatement.

Thematically akin to Brian Eno’s Music For… series, the nine book-ended tracks here are more beneficial to the listener if heard on noise-cancelling headphones, uninterrupted, preferably looking for seashells on a deserted beach as an overcast sky threatens to lash down. Low-key? Perhaps, but also very comforting.

Tony Clayton-Lea

Tony Clayton-Lea

Tony Clayton-Lea is a contributor to The Irish Times specialising in popular culture