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Synth Album Review: "Nobody From Nowhere With Nothing" by Chatterless

Author:

Karl is a longtime freelancer who's passionate about music, art, and writing.

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Initial Impressions

Chatterless’ Nobody From Nowhere With Nothing is a journey through a breathy, celestial soundscape with a detailed sonic signature. It has a unique sound to it that extends outside of the usual synthwave dimensions, creating a cohesive piece of audio storytelling.

The first aspect of the album that I find attractive is the high production quality. The music sounds clean as it moves over the wide-open space of the soundstage. It is an album that breathes easily as it flows along, allowing the listener to enjoy the attention to detail that Chatterless exhibits in his music.

The attention to detail on Nobody From Nowhere With Nothing is especially evident in the way that I can pick up unique micro-interactions between sounds. It’s hard to put into words, but I the subtle variations in synth tones work together to create a shifting tapestry of sound. There’s nuance and shading to the music that is generated in the way the different building blocks are combined.

I want to mention the crisp drum sounds and powerful bass on this album as well. I enjoy the way in which those two elements coalesce to form a heartbeat for the album. The drums are both massive and sharp while the bass provides a rock-solid underpinning for the other sonic components of the tracks. Together they add a propulsive feel to Nobody From Nowhere With Nothing.

This album has a fairly restrained synth palette, but uses those synths to their full capacity. The result is a cohesive musical experience in which the relatively limited number of synths interact in intricate ways. I also enjoy the way in which Chatterless contrasts smoothness with sharpness in his choice of synths. The end result catches and holds my ears as it unfolds.

My Favourite Tracks Analyzed

"Open The Portal” comes to life with the sound of massive doors being activated before the vastness of the auditory space is filled with a hollow, deep synth that throbs steadily. An elevated, tense synth flows before the solid, powerful drums anchor a landscape washed by luminous sound. I enjoy how the soft synths form gentle clouds, that all coalesce into misty air over the heavy bass and drum drive while a trumpeting flash of singing synth calls out in a brief, hopeful melody before it fades.

Undulating waves of synth surge rhythmically as a throaty bass pulse joins them to begin “Stay With Me.” The drums have a chest punching power below a shimmering flutter of airy, high synth that sings out above the density underpinning it. Sharply defined synth waves keep flowing in a pattern over the massive drums’ thick weight. I enjoy how glittering whorls of synth flicker in the background and add a sense of hope to the track.

There’s a break into bouncy, clean synth carrying a gentle note pattern before the heartbeat of drums and dense bass forms again. The bright, repeating synth adds a feeling of sun shining through mist as the intertwining synth landscape keeps surging and moving in a textured tapestry while the sharp waves move on and fade into hazy sonic washes.

“Nobody From Nowhere With Nothing” starts off with powerful, hard-hitting drums as a slow, deep arpeggio whirls with a clean, sharp edge. A wide-feeling, medium-high synth with a metallic feeling sings out an emotive, aching melody that I found touching. The clean edge of a lower synth line cuts below the lead melody.

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A feeling of melancholy loss radiates from this music. There’s a break back into the distant feeling arpeggio as it spins and grows in strength over the density and power moving below on bass and drums. The hypnotic, shining lead synth calls out, filling the track with a sense of journeying over broad, arpeggiating notes that fade into silence.

Thumping drums and a deep well of bass anchor “Long Shadows On The Sand” while a leaping, glittering synth carries a rising melody that climbs in a jumping line. I am drawn to the way the melody soars out over the slightly uneven, potent drum pulsation underneath it. A hollow, warm synth with a piping sound carries a softly affecting melody, feeling a little lost as it moves over the the strong drums and dense bass.

The arpeggio that circles in has a thickness to it above the steady bass throb. A bubbling, open-sounding synth trickles below the softly rising, enfolding melody that has a diffuse feeling to it. A very deep, uniquely rich synth arpeggio twirls below a roaming, hollow pipe-like synth with a bubbling trickle as the track fades out.

“Dreams Away From Dreams” starts out with a gauzy, spaced out flow of misty synth shivering out above a rich bass background. I am enamoured of the way this track is all glimmering light over top of the big beat’s solidity below it.

Hollow, bright synth is cut by elevated, nasal flashes as the round, converging lines all intertwine. A rough-edged but delicate synth line carries out over the massive drums that keep on pulsing along. The hypnotic synth pattern moves with a sense of ease, sunny sounds moving in before everything fades down to the nasal, dreamy synth that ends in silence.

A fragile, medium-low synth line makes a shifting journey as “Vanish” comes to life. Another medium-low, nasal and slightly distorted synth floats through before twisting pan pipes carry the drifting, ghostly melody. There’s a pleasantly ephemeral quality to the lead melody as open sounding, solid drums burst into the music.

An oscillating bass synth moves in a steadily pulsing beat and clouds of airy sound flow through the track. The ancient-sounding, hollow melody glides on, breathing smoothly as it calls out over the bass depths. This track feels open and lost while swirls of synth fade away into emptiness.

“Icarus” kicks off with a computerized melodic pattern that possesses a tech-y feeling. An even drum pulse propels the track while jangling, glassy chimes ring out over top of the energetic melody. I like the way that the melody roams across the surface of the track while sweeping crystalline synths move.

A dynamic bassline adds more form as ethereal chimes join in. The evolving, angular melody leaps in with a digital sound as it wraps around the rounder, sounds that move with it. Open-sounding drums move and fade while the equally hollow bassline oscillates and broken, distant chimes keep calling out. The track is patterned and textured as it ends.

Conclusion

Nobody From Nowhere With Nothing is an album that is both clean and lush. The synth sounds have a unique feeling and a restrained quality, but they are well-combined by Chatterless. Add the celestial, airy sonic landscape to the propulsive low end drive and combine it with the high production values and the end result is ear-pleasing.

© 2021 Karl Magi

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