Its been a while since I had a chance to review anything from the Fluid Audio label so the chance to check out ‘Our Fearful Symmetry’ by Hummingbird was something of a long overdue treat. Rather than give myself a dedicated listening session this album became my walking companion over the last day or so as I moved around a bright and sunny yet somewhat quiet Sheffield (the students have gone home and Glastonbury seems to have beckoned the rest).

Its a striking collection, sparse and slightly otherworldly. The arrangements are largely minimal consisting of spacious piano arrangements, strings and a disparate array of varied percussive elements. The overrall mood is one that is rooted in melancholy but in this instance that’s no bad thing. Right from the opening track “Uncertainty In Copenhagen” we have gentile arrangements that really seek to draw the attention of the listener, listening to this on headphones does have the effect of making the everyday world become somewhat secondary. A sun drenched day in a slightly underpopulated city suddenly becomes akin to being the last man on Earth. The skittish found sounds that fall into place behind the musical arrangements are the aural equivalent of something playing across the edge of your field of vision. Intriguing stuff indeed.

Its an unusual soundtrack for these balmy sunny days but trust me its a worthwhile one.