Zoon van Snook is the moniker of Bristol based Alec Snook. He recently released his second full length album, with the title The Bridge Between Life and Death, on Lo Recordings. The album sees him collaborate with Amiina, Sin Fang, Benni Hemm Hemm and Múm. Not surprising, then, that the album is built around field recordings taken in Iceland in 2009.
His previous records are the LP (Falling from) The Nutty Tree, and the single The Verge of Winter. If you are a fan of the collaborators on the newest record, you are guaranteed to be a fan of Zoon van Snook. A beautifully composed, cohesive and thoughtful album speckled with sound bytes and gloriously epic moments shrouded in twinkling piano and sweeping violins. In the background, muttering voices and the humming of life passing by create an intimately secluded experience. It is elegant, musing; tittering and tottering through a musical soundscape that seems so clearly inspired by the environment it was sampled from.
There’s a naturalness to the whole experience, especially on track Tjörnin Side, speckled with ”flaws” so to speak, which humanizes the music making process and discards the overproduction that is so common these days, in favour of a polished variability. It’s no surprise he’s mates with legendary Boards of Canada; he easily stands shoulder to shoulder in their category of beautifully experimental and enticing electronic music. The Bridge Between Life and Death has already garnered massive amounts of respect and recognition by the “powers that be” in the music world, and rightfully so. It reminds me of a tinkering box, all grown up and advanced for adults. Like a magical world contained within a case, and when you open it, a figurehead spins, creating a private narrative and landscape within your mind that only the holder can explore.
The Bridge Between Life and Death is out now on Lo Recordings, available for purchase and free to stream here.