Vivid Low Sky, a purely instrumental project masterminded by Plastique co-founder and Gerty member David Koslowski, is a foray into the Pell Mell school of pop. Awash in reverb-drenched guitars, the tracks vary from low-key experimental numbers to fat, layered guitar patterns that surge and subside. Music for Movies Unmade is really a solo outing for Koslowski; the songs came about from watching television with the sound down, accompaniment to plotless, dialogue-free images. (His dogs Nigel and Nico, also couch spuds, kept him company--they get their own song.) Aided by guitarist Tom Moore (Plow) and Shirle Hale (Gerty) on bass and synth, the album also features Burning Airlines' J. Robbins on two tracks, while Airport '77's Miyuki Furtado guests on "A Plastic Smudge."
The first two tracks are reminiscent of the fabulous guitar-layered instrumentals of Pell Mell's Flow or Interstate--repetitive grooves and sophisto guitar patterns that reverberate in a Badlands amount of space. This is music for an expanding horizon (as seen through your bug-spattered windshield)--the perfect soundtrack for a solo road trip. The songs range from ambient, washy tone experiments ("Nigel and Nico are Sleeping") and slide guitar pop ("About to Set Sail") to discordant, tone-bending guitar squalls ("Smash My Pinky"). On one track--the stop/start oddly-chorded thrashy "Bumble Bee Crown King"-- they manage to summon the ghost of Polvo. A supremely cool, atmospheric album, Songs for Movies Unmade can be the score to whatever images dance in your brain. (And dig the album cover--a retro, pouty, nude babe sprawled in a silver vinyl chair with a strategically placed Danelectro!)