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A Magazine for

Mirador

Mirador

Ten years ago, Animat played their first major show at the Big Chill Festival. Now we get to experience that moment again - all the excitement, all the enjoyment, thousands of people enraptured by two downtempo wizards.

Mirador is the collection of ten years of work by two men, Mark Daly and Michael Harding. Some songs on this album may be a decade old, but each sounds fresh and vibrant. Time has not dulled the beauty of these sonic landscapes. Each song is a finely crafted lesson in mood, whether it’s the use of crackling recordings telling of snow over shimmering glacial chimes or soaring vocals set to ethereal synth. Every instrument fits in its rightful place, no guitar feels out of place, nor does a flute flourish ever sound wrong. Timing, planning, an understanding of what can make and break a song - these are the things that Animat excel at.

Standout tracks like 'Heart Shaped Balloons' use reversed instruments and staccato synth stabs to create a haunting and hypnotic ambience. Yet the very next track, 'Riverbed Road', is a super chilled downtempo groove complete with soulful vocals. Mirador showcases the vast array of moods and tones that these two gentleman can create, seemingly effortlessly. From haunting frostiness to laid-back warmth, in ten years the sheer diversity is staggering.

Performing live reworkings of film soundtracks, like the cult sci-fi classic Dark Star, David Lynch’s intense The Straight Story, and the Oscar-winning animation Belleville Rendezvouz, and at the same time putting out some incredible albums, no-one can say that Animat haven’t been busy for the last decade. If the last ten years have produced so much immense quality, so many emotions and sonic journeys, I am thrilled by what the next ten years might hold.