A Young Person’s Guide To Kyle Bobby Dunn

Before researching Kyle Bobby Dunn’s A Young Person’s Guide to Kyle Bobby Dunn, I never knew there was a genre known as “drone”. It’s not exactly a term that fills me with confidence. Dunn describes his genre (at least on his Myspace) as “minimal”. It is minimal, quite possibly “drone”, but it is also excellent. Throw away any preconceptions; you can have this album playing unobtrusively in the background and it will never dominate nor annoy. It would all class as instrumental. Voices appear out of the ether but they are so subtle as to be mistaken for background noise. There are moments where the music is so quiet that it becomes almost inaudible; I actually thought it had finished before I realised it was halfway through a 14 minute song.

It is a rarity to find a double album that despite having many tracks over the ten minute mark is never boring, dead or self indulgent. There is no progressive knob twiddling, cacophony or noise for the sake of noise. It’s almost ambient in nature, never demanding your attention, instead subtly drawing you in. It reminded me of some of Ryuichi Sakamoto’s or Vangelis’ works – it is down tempo but never depressing. Never using trickery to gain your attention, it instead plays at the edge of your consciousness. You don’t realise that it’s having any effect on you until it’s finished.

It isn’t an album for everyone – it actually put my girlfriend to sleep (perhaps that’s a plus) – but if you enjoy some subtlety, without lyrics guiding your emotions, A Young Person’s Guide to Kyle Bobby Dunn is extremely rewarding. I cannot recommend this album enough.

Review by Jonjon. Check out the sampler below.