“On this new LP the Canadian trumpeter, tape manipulator and bowed guitarist continues to explore deeply emotional and introspective territory with an epic sweep that’s simultaneously free of any pomp and bombast. Ostensibly an ambient artist, C. Diab works with a lush and organic eye for tenderness that goes beyond many of his contemporaries, wielding subtly virtuosic strings at an elegiac pace with virtuosic skill. Excellent!”
The Quietus, Albums of the Month
“On Exit Rumination, everything Diab has previously achieved is focused and perfected. [It] emerges as ambient music in the best sense…If I walked around with this in my ears, I might con myself into thinking we live in a beautiful world.”
Having gained critical acclaim with the release of his debut album ‘No Perfect Wave’ (2016) and his collaborative works with Ian William Craig (FatCat / 130701 Records), C. Diab is back with his sophomore LP ‘Exit Rumination’.
‘Exit Rumination’ is a deeply personal record, and was composed during a particularly challenging time for its creator. Diab says of the process; “it became a deep sonic exorcism which took on its own face during the recording process. The final product can be understood as various stages of a path towards acceptance, and the struggle to maintain sanity in the face of life’s most unforgiving themes, love and death.”
The album is packed with the skilful guitar and trumpet playing and tape manipulation that made ‘No Perfect Wave’ so special but comes from a darker, more devastating place. It is a hypnotic, meditative, mesmerising affair which immerses the listener even deeper in his universe.
Opening with the haunting harmonic guitar pinches of ‘The Green Plain Pt.1’, ‘Exit Rumination’ immediately transposes the setting and mood of the record over the listener; before the sombre bowed melody takes hold and swallows the track whole. On ‘Postdrome’ there are also forays into more contemporary ambience with C. Diab’s virtuosic guitar loops mimicking the sort of synth work that brings to mind Tim Hecker or Richard Skelton alongside mournful troubadour tinged passages of glacial, slow-motion textures; here is the soul-bearing and intimate tenderness portrayed through C. Diab’s instrumentation, that temporarily touches on Arthur Russell or Robbie Basho’s deep American folk stylings.
“Exit Rumination was originally imagined as a different album entirely, perhaps more playful and childlike in tone and composition, meant to convey a sense of peaceful enquiry” says Diab. “In late 2015, I had made a short recording of a late-night jam between a guitar, violin and child’s toy in Germany (which appears at the end of “Old Red”). We were all happy and drunk, and the short recording contained a spark of warmth and comfort, a feeling which I thought I would take to the next album, a kind of important joy. But, upon returning home, various life events out of my control were set in motion, which over the course of a year, deeply challenged my preconceived notions of love and death, joy and anger, and forced me down a rabbit hole of difficult introspection, a time I found would ultimately inform the nine compositions which would make up the album.”
Released 30 March 2018.
Cover art by Simon DeBree.
Design by Pelin Morris.
Art direction by Siné Buyuka & C. Diab.