Joshua Abrams & Natural Information Society - Simultonality review: ‘An enchanting, light-filled album’

Jane Cornwell
New album: Simultonality by Joshua Abrams & Natural Information Society

Need something to listen to on the hop?

This enchanting, light-filled album powers along a busy sonic terrain with a sort of freewheeling grace, swift enough to carry you away but always changing gears imperceptibly, looping and swerving through jazz, minimalism, rock and traditional rhythms of North Africa.

Anyone who’s been to the Gnawa Festival in Essaouira, Morocco (go!) will recognise the hypnotic throb of the guimbri, the three-stringed bass lute, which Abrams deploys to hypnotic effect alongside the guitars, bass, harmonium, percussion and dual-kit drums of his tight-knit band.

Tracks stretching to up to 12 minutes keep the trance factor at a premium. A shorter piece, St Cloud, with its pretty bells and chimes, is a restorative pitstop. Time-expanding.