Last December, we reviewed a lovely album called, Coming Attractions, a body of work we happily found to be, “unique, wise, and luxurious in its composition.” Much to our satisfaction, that album’s composer—indie musician Toby Tune (a.k.a., Harley Toberman)—has continued to grind it out in his Costa Rica studio.
Recently adding to his anthology (which also includes the projects: Travels, and Massage Musica), Toberman has just released Paraphernalia, yet another ambient delight, rich with synth-heavy, blissed-out melodies.
Here’s what we dug most…
Opening with, Mashed Up, one quickly discovers the meaning of the track’s name, as the melody line travels from an opening of dark, impending synth, to bright keys accompanied by a dashing of acoustic guitars and percussion, then back into the darkness. The track’s dynamics are an adventurous trailer for the remainder of the album.
Our Favorite Track:
Up There is saturatingly vast and expansive. Layer upon layer of heavy, airy synth, vocal synth, and a basic kick and clap, are eventually joined around 1:45 with a most tasteful saxophone; and then at 2:20 with a perfectly subtle, rolling bass-line, slightly more substantial snare, and gentle, electric guitar notes which rise and fall far off in the distance. You could argue its a dance track…done Toby’s way. Very dig-worthy.
Skyward‘s rolling piano chords reminded me instantly of the early work of New-Age legend, Enya. At 1:06 a beat drops out of nowhere, pushing the track toward some New-Age/House hybrid. Super cool stuff.
Flutter Waltz belongs in the next installment of Hotel Transylvania. (Perhaps my favorite kids’ movies of all time). No, seriously! Who’s with me on this?
The super-chill, Ride With Me, has a sparkling, island-vibe that makes me think of Bobby McFerrin.
Continuing to unearth and refine his creative process, I have once again thoroughly enjoyed yet another Toby Tune experience. With the release of Paraphernalia, it’s fair to say he has cemented his status as one of The Ark of Music’s favorite artists. Never failing to entertain, this collection of songs is rich in contrast and, perhaps more importantly, easy on the soul.
Moby makes a record with Enya…
BELOW, you can listen to Toby Tune’s album, Paraphernalia, and connect with his website and social media platforms. Please support Toby Tune by visiting him online, and playing, downloading, and/or purchasing his music. And, as always, thank you for supporting real music!