Aftermath, the second Projekt release from Belgium’s Stratosphere (a.k.a. Ronald Mariën), is built upon layering shimmers of guitar and bass-generated tones and drones. The album’s core seems inspired by post-rock, drone ambient and the work of Fripp & Eno, yet it speaks its own expressive voice.
The stormclouds of guitar-generated soundsculpting utilize textures, sometimes shadowy, sometimes melodic and engaging, all swirling in slow dynamics of change to obscure and reveal the passionate resonance of the creator himself. On Aftermath, Stratosphere continues to explore the consequences of a darker period of life, still feeding on his recent experiences which influence compositions towards tension and emotional outbursts not found on early Stratosphere releases. These moods are translated into six tracks of an introspective, personal nature.
For the listener, this emotion comes across as warm, satisfying and engaging: a towering sonic experience that is apprehensive yet unlifting. As the final track, “When You Think Everything is Alright…,” reveals, there is hope with a path for brighter futures. Hidden underneath the gloom, a strong and positive side shows through.
Aftermath affects the listener, fluidly circling through crescendos of feelings, processed sounds and guitar drones.
released May 12, 2015
All music composed by Stratosphere
Recorded in 2013-2014
Mastered by Dirk Serries
Graphic design and photography by Benjamin van der Zalm
Thanks to Sam Rosenthal and Jerome Moncada
Special thanks to Dirk Serries for his continuing support