Arroyo Low

Bodan Kuma Records, 2022


REVIEW BY: Tom Haugen


On this debut album from the atypical Los Angeles artist Dane Sandborg (IRONTOM, Fox Trails), the multi-instrumentalist performing under the moniker Arroyo Low blends many noises makers into a mashing of ambient, lo-fi electronica, jazz, world music and other ideas, a very modern formula. my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

The title track starts the listen with a warm haze of soothing atmosphere, as precise and cultured percussion complements the waves of soft beauty. “Blank Thoughts” then continues the creativity with a bit of a hypnotic pace, where playful electronics help cultivate a landscape of sublime introspection.

Moving toward the middle, “Fontaine” finds plenty of charming grooves that help make for a dance floor-ready four minutes, while “Further Away” emits mesmerizing beats alongside a very stylish, fleeting energy. “Ghost,” one of the album's best, then showcases graceful piano and very dreamy singing that floats amid the lush textures of surreal electro-pop.

The back half of the listen offers us the drumming-focused, sax-friendly and busy spirit of “Moments” which benefits from 5/4 time, as well as the mysterious and soulful “Limouisine,” where Minoru's stunning pipes are on hand for the breathy trip-hop climate that buzzes lowly. The final track, “Windsor,” is as impressive as the rest of the album and flows with a cinematic appeal that benefits from meticulous guitar and a lovely melody that you won't soon forget. 

A very artist and highly intricate first album, Sandborg might best be known as a bass player who has accomplished much as both a session and touring musician. This work as Arroyo Low is opening new avenues that take emotion and space into consideration, and the help he takes from Aaron Westine, Blake McLeod, Michael Brenner, Dylan Grombacher, Amanda Espy and Michael Rollins only enhances our listening experience.

Rating: B+

User Rating: Not Yet Rated



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