Olly Peryman's musical philosophy might seem bewildering. He considers sound a powerful force that affects its surrounding environment and active listeners. The creative process involves meditation and personal reflection. What he produces is often rousing, capricious and vaguely spiritual, transcending both casual listening and the club. From Patterns To Details, the New Zealander's first record for Subtext, stays true to his approach.
The soaring "CMB Inna" evokes the same kind of celestial grandeur as Paul Jebanasam's devastating Continuum, an album intended to chronicle the birth and death of existence. From Patterns To Details' scope is just as ambitious, evoking creation from destructive forces. This is a blinding, aching event in opener "Root Collars." Something wonderful is being made, or destroyed, and it would be an excruciating experience if the music wasn’t so fiercely luminescent.
"SeaPR" is much easier on the ears. Its sounds and rhythms are bodily and tactile. The same can be said for "Treat Inner Eris," a more animalistic—or maybe humanistic—production. Three minutes in, the ambiguous noises form into an instrument we might recognise. Maybe a horn? Probably not. Peryman's sound world is entirely fabricated and unreal, which is ultimately From Patterns To Details' biggest sell.
There's little room for melody here, though "Independently Together" tries, and it makes the album feel a bit clinical and difficult to engage with. As with last year's The Blue Quicksand Is Going Now, this is a gruelling listen. "Sieve Stack" reaches cataclysmic extremes that are almost unbearable, but still, you can't help but be impressed. Closer "Heart Wash" is the album's most delicate and accessible moment, and for those reasons, probably its best. From Patterns To Details is ultimately better suited to a live setting, experienced in darkness and free of distractions. Only then can FIS's resonance be truly felt.