Haz – Above the Treeline

Artist: Haz
Title: Above The Treeline
Label: Herb, Scotland
Details: DL/CD. 6 tracks, 23 minutes.

Haz is a Scots expatriate who lives down under. Above the Treeline was conceived and recorded on the South Island of New Zealand last year and immediately struck me as the sound of someone in awe and in love with his surroundings. The six instrumentals are all under four and a half minutes long, but nevertheless sound epic in scale. Haz combines electronics and live instrumentation (drums, guitars etc) to produce a sound that is upbeat, largely uptempo and melodic but not without a certain wistfulness. For comparisons, think of a sound somewhere between Eno’s classic seventies albums, Dif Juz, New Order and Haz’s labelmate Engine7.

It’s a lovely little set. It’s not often I hear mini LPs that I wished were longer, but this one falls into that category. Beautiful cover painting too.