Sound Scene Express

The Garment District “Luminous Toxin” Album Review

The Garment District
Luminous Toxin
Released by Kendra Steiner Editions

The Garment District is the moniker of multi instrumentalist Jennifer Baron, who was
a founding member of Brooklyn’s The Labybug Transistor (Merge Records). Her
previous releases were met with critical acclaim and she had a track remixed by Sonic
Boom of legendary group Spacemen 3. This is her second full length album,
following 2014’s If You Take Your Magic Slow.

Her music is what I would describe as ambient, comparable in ways with an artist like
Brian Eno and her style also brought to mind composer Angelo Badalamenti at points.
The tracks are all instrumentals, though quite varied in duration, ranging from thirty
seconds to nine minutes long.

Instrumentally, they are built around developing melodic progressions of 70’s
sounding analog synths, bass and guitar, though other instrumentation is used, such as
glockenspiel on “Espy Waltz.” Highlights of the album were for me “The Feral Surfers,”
which brought to mind the other worldly instrumentals of David Bowie’s “Low,” a
collaboration with Brian Eno, the intriguingly titled “Meeting of the Dark Sky
Association” and the elegiac closing piece “Women Who Keep The Lights.”

Overall, this is a fascinating sonic journey that exists on its own sound world and
transports the listener in their mind, as with the best ambient music. Already with a
sizeable fanbase, this second album should see it grow further as there is
certainly an audience for this genre of music.

Review by Alex Faulkner for SSE

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