Repress on white vinyl, expected mid-June.
Impossibly poignant final release from Tomaga following the untimely passing of Tom Relleen last year. It's hard to receive the music free of that context, though it offers a fitting postscript to a lifetime invested in creative enquiry. For me, this is perhaps the best Tomaga record, which in itself is a bittersweet experience - enjoy the music for what it is, though it's hard not to imagine just where these roads might next lead. Tomaga are of course a duo, Relleen alongside the all round rhythmical monolith that is Valentina Magaletti, and the pair continue to combine with a rare symbiosis, each intuitively allowing the space in which the other's contributions can exist (the clue was always in that portmanteau of a name). And Intimate Immensity is appropriate titled, home recorded during Relleen's final months in 2020 and shaped by what they reference as the 'poetics of space', the ten tracks articulating a private universe that runs parallel to the presiding narratives of last year, expressing the very particular situation in which the pair found themselves. Which is to say - and perhaps this is a projection knowing what we do now - this feels like a very emotional record, the tracks supple, fluid, introspective and deeply resonant, aided hugely by Relleen's masterful and ever surprising electronics and production. The drumming, of course, as usual, remains astonishing, Magaletti a virtuoso of both the maximal and the minimal. She knows when to go, and when to hold back, flitting between krautrock linearity and jazz-influenced polyrhythms. Cathy Lucas of Vanishing Twin lends her vocals to the excellent Broadcast-like 'Very Never (My Mind Extends)', though the rest remains wordless. No matter, for the closing title track says more than enough, a grandiose, heavier than heaven finale with a string arrangement that seems to reach into the infinite. Say no more.