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Windy & Carl



Since the early '90s, Windy Weber and Carl Hultgren have been conducting musical experiments in their Dearborn, Michigan home studio that sound something like the members of a celestial orchestra quietly and slowly tuning their instruments. Or perhaps like the sound you hear while floating in an isolation tank. Well, their compositions evoke a vast number of images and ideas, but all pertain to the other side of consciousness, the faraway places the mind can take you. Their droning, gentle pieces wash over you like cool water that insulates you from the outside world. Minimalism is the order of the day -- this is a duo, after all -- as Windy and Carl create their vast, spacious, otherworldly arias with but a guitar, a bass, a bit of keyboard, and a ton of dreamy effects. Occasionally Windy sings, an ethereal murmur of a voice that transforms the droning ambience into something resembling a heavenly lullaby. Worshippers at the altar of My Bloody Valentine's Loveless are exhorted to enter this duo's temple.

Windy and Carl achieve their lovely, organic sound in part by writing during the recording process, creating fresh, almost-improvisational pieces that Carl immediately mixes, enshrouding them in layers of effects. Carl was already experimenting with this approach, recording instrumental guitar-drone pieces, when he and Windy joined forces in 1993. The duo briefly became a quartet a year later, adding percussionist Brenda Markovich and guitarist Randall Nieman, but both left in 1995 (Nieman to start Fuxa). Windy and Carl's first proper album was 1995's Portal, actually a reissue of an early cassette release. In 1996, Drawing of Sound followed. Shortly thereafter, Chicago's Kranky signed them, and they've released two LPs sine, 1998's Depths and 2001's Consciousness. That's in addition to the duo's countless singles, most of them on their own Blue Flea label. Besides recording together and running Blue Flea, Windy and Carl also own and operate a record store in Dearborn called Stormy Records.

The tracks "Balance (Trembling)" and "Consciousness" both come from the Consciousness release.