Boards Of Canada have always put out fascinating music. While much of it has been relatively mellow, many of their songs being downright ambient, there’s also been a sense of foreboding about many of their compositions. Their long-awaited new album Tomorrow’s Harvest has all of these elements. There are some fairly calm songs, but most of these songs feel like score for a very bleak film. In fact, someone should get Lars Von Trier to listen to this. Either he’d want to license it for his next film or he’d want to hire the duo to compose some original music for him. I just know this would be right up his alley.
Most reviews of this album seem to mention the end of the world. That’s partially because the album is named after an online store specializing in items one might need if the world as we know it comes to pass. But it’s also because this music sounds very apocalyptic. Opening track “Gemini” leaves you feeling like something bad is going to happen. It reminds me of being a kid in the ’80’s and constantly worrying that Russia was going to nuke us. The following track, “Reach For The Dead,” would be perfect for a montage of scenes showing nukes exploding all over the world, destroying entire cities and more. Then you have “White Cyclosa,” a subtle but anxious track perfect for when the nuclear winter sets in after WWIII has destroyed 95% of life on the planet. Then there’s “Jacquard Causeway,” which would play well during a scene where survivors of the war come to blows and a bloodbath ensues. I could go on and on. In fact, I should probably keep the images this album fills my head with to myself and use them to write a new screenplay. Suffice to say that this is an instrumental album — there are some voices on it, but you can barely hear them — that paints pictures just as vivid as any album with vocals. The lack of vocals somehow makes the music that much more emotional.
If the new Daft Punk is too cheery for you and you want some dark electronic music, look no further. And if you’re unfamiliar with Boards Of Canada then now is the perfect time for you to get acquainted with their always emotive world.