Gentle pulse, deep echo, and the alluring heat of mirage; this is the mysterious sonic imagery evoked throughout the enchanting music of Chiaroscuro – a new release by Canadian composer Jordan Nobles. Chiaroscuro is a term used in visual art referring to the careful use of light and dark to create the illusion of three-dimensional volume on a flat surface. Nobles’ brilliant use of instrumental colour does exactly that: the artifice of tone painting creating multi-aural brush strokes of vast hyper-chroma.
Although the music seems to provide a static environment on the surface, a masterful and beautiful complexity unfolds beneath. It is a space propelled forward by shimmering strings, luminous harp flourishes, fluttering winds and vocal wisps – messages from another world that travel by wind to ear. Nobles treats the large instrumental forces with such care that one seems to forget that there are separate voices: the resultant amalgam presented as unified iridescence. The two pieces on the disc offer oceans of spiritual radiances for the listener – make the time and dive in.