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NORMAN WESTBERG
After Vacation LP
Room40 81 / AUS / 2018
Norman Westberg is perhaps best recognised for his truly individual approach to guitar with the band SWANS. His new solo record, After Vacation, is his first full length to come in the wake of the final SWANS outing in its current configuration. More importantly it is also the first record to see Westberg move beyond a more performative mode of single take composition. After Vacation sees Westberg significantly expand his sonic palette. He opens up the tonal and harmonic possibilities of his instrument in unexpected and profoundly beautiful ways. His guitar, as singular source, becomes transformed through a web of outboard processes. He transforms vibrating strings completely, taking singular gesture and reshapes it through webs of delay, reverb and other treatments. Moreover he finds a new sense of space and dimension with these recordings. After Vacation has a de- cidedly more topographic sense. It charts out the dark contours of places unseen but imagined.