THE FRONT PORCH OF HEAVEN (2020)
"The title of Kevin Keller’s latest album sounds like a Clifford Simak novel. Comforting but mysterious. Homespun yet majestic. Inspired by Keller’s recent heart surgery, which included being on life support while having his heart deliberately stopped during the operation, the music seems made to soothe us in our moments of anxiety even as it explores that anxiety.
This is classic ambient, in many ways: the mix of acoustic piano (with that Budd-esque halo around its tones), lush strings and synthesizers. But it is also modern in its resolute pulsations. Keller, as has often been the case in his long career, usually defines the rhythm not with drums but with instrumental patterns. This is music of loops, but organic loops – and as those loops are stacked one over another to increase the music’s density, gorgeous slow melodies float above them."