The cult Brit comic tones down the laughs for a suprisingly introverted offering

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Matt Berry - 'Music For Insomniacs'

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Matt Berry – ‘Music For Insomniacs’

Matt Berry has regularly cited Mike Oldfield as a huge influence on his work. However, the IT Crowd/Garth Marenghi man has never paid homage to the ’70s synth-prog pioneer as explicitly as he does here. A winding 45-minute ambient piece, initially written to cure his own insomnia, its lunar-evoking analogue synths and isolated keyboard melodies lean heavily on Oldfield’s ‘Tubular Bells’, Jean-Michel Jarre’s ‘Oxygene’ or any of the great ’70s long-form electronic works. However within the context of Berry, the sparse, calm arrangements are a fascinating contrast to the largely brash, high-octane characters he’s more known for on TV. Aside from the vocoder-enhanced cosmic disco that features midway, this is an introverted offering – though much too good to fall asleep to.

Simon Jay Catling

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Record label:Acid Jazz