Sound Impression: Lessening by Ralph Kinsella

Ralph Kinsella is a guitarist, composer & electronic musician who hails from Dumfries & Galloway in Scotland’s Southern Uplands. While there is no shortage of travel sites that would point out its attractions, Kinsella sees it as “a liminal, fringe space … where rural and semi-rural Scotland uncomfortably meet urban areas”, a characteristic which he feels is reflected in his music.

“The boondocks, interspersed with fragments of debris and flickering housing scheme street lights. These places (and the artistic exploration of these places) suffuse my work.”

Ralph kinsella

This perspective gets full expression on a mesmerizing new full-length album entitled Lessening that draws on Kinsella’s background in lo-fi indie rock & shoegaze while foraying into more obscure territories illuminated by influences ranging from electronic music pioneer Elaine Radigue to legendary experimental guitarist Loren Connors. The result is a sort of musical edgeland where abstract soundscapes and other sonic detritus occupy space alongside accessible melodic shapes and the reassuring thrum of sonorous acoustic & electric guitars. It is an ambitious concept, but Kinsella pulls it off beautifully and in so doing creates a place of his own that you may very likely wish to linger in as well.

Order: Bandcamp

Lessening is now available from 8D Industries (based in Orlando, Florida) as a name-your-price download and features striking cover art by Matthew Naquin (aka San Mateo).