Continuous Portrait by Inventions [7/10]

Two brilliant musicians from different fields, Mark T. Smith from that unforgettable propulsive group, Explosions In The Sky, and Matthew Robert Cooper of crackly, fuzzy ambient Eluvium, combine to make up Inventions. “Continuous Portrait,” their third album, is a modest yet rather thrilling collection of oddball tunes. “Calico” settles into a rattling, shuffling rhythm overlaid by choral voice, banjo and thumped keys. The pastoral title track combines in a smooth organic whole disparate ambient elements such as burbles, rhymic chimes, and whispers. “Hints and Omens,” the longest of the nine tracks, begins with laughter and interjected keyboard figures and sounds, and then morphs into a pleasing EITS-style grandiose panorama. Some of the tracks are properly background ambient, but overall “Continuous Portrait” is more than the sum of its disparate parts, a moody, optimistic ode to modern music.

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