IMMUNE - Not Until Morning

Immune - Not Until Morning

8 songs
45:37 minutes
***** ****


Three years ago, Immune convinced me with their back then electro-acoustic music that emphasised the power of silence. Since then, they released some stuff (first album, EP, compilation contributions) that I missed, so that their second full length CD Not Until Morning came quite as a surprise. The electronic elements have all but gone, they keyboards are used as regular instruments, providing a warm sound that encompasses the acoustic instruments. In that respect, Immune are following the development of Talk Talk who also had quite modest beginnings and then turned out to become music pioneers with their last two albums… let’s just hope that Immune will not come to an end so quickly. Another influence seems to be Robert Wyatt, especially his groundbreaking Rock Bottom from 1974, which uses a similar array of sounds.

At eight songs in three quarters of an hour, Immune take their time to develop their compositions. The music is evocative, quiet and even vaguely sedative. The vocals show a lot of parallels to Mark Hollis, but considering that he’s retired for ten years now, the world might just be ready for another person with a voice like that. Of course the production is not as clear and as transparent as on the late Talk Talk albums, but then Immune certainly only had a fraction of that budget.

From a stylistic approach, Not Until Morning is not really an original album. But form and content make up for that, as the Frenchmen prove that they are far better at this than the constantly overrated Radiohead or the effeminate Sigur Ros, for instance, and that they really know what they are doing, combining acoustic string instruments with warm electronic piano sounds that make the summery temperatures outside shiver. Not Until Morning is an excellent example about how to play quiet post-rock music without ever sounding derivative.

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