AMN Reviews

AMN Reviews: Grey Frequency – Ufology (2019; Bandcamp)

Declared “an audio exploration of British UFO sightings from the second half of the twentieth century,” the latest from Grey Frequency is a set of gritty drones and sparse ambient meanderings with dark textures and overtones. Each of the eight tracks explores a specific one of these alleged encounters. The driving force behind Grey Frequency is Nottingham’s Gavin Morrow.

In literature, TV, and movies, UFO lore combines aspects of mystery, horror, and science fiction. It often serves as a storytelling avenue for asking the existential questions of “Why are we here?” and “Are we alone?” While Ufology does not attempt to address the first question, it implicitly answers the second with the clear, “No.” The album’s brooding atmospherics, bleak constructs, and rhythmic and non-rhythmic patterns, evoke a sense of foreboding and tension. Morrow combines field recordings and synths with electroacoustic crumbling, crackling and snapping. Sequenced melodies accompany post-industrial echoing and machine-like humming. This creates a soundworld with rich acoustic imagery – fog-strewn fields, abandoned laboratories, mysterious structures, and alien artifacts.

Ufology is a refreshing blend of dark ambient waves with both structured and unstructured background noises. In a sense, it is a logical descendant of early 70’s space music ala Tangerine Dream, but with more than a few hints of modern digital compositional techniques.