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An immersive, dystopian, even nightmarish exploration, Fionnlagh’s ‘What Came Before’ drops the listener into an unfolding flashback. Soaring synths over dark, brooding sub tones crescendo in a style that already seems a unique hallmark of the artist, with an immediacy that is as transfixing as it is unsettling. An album to be listened to, to be bravely thrown in front of, and one that stands out boldly amongst its contemporaries. The album’s narrative is one of previous shared experience, shared burden, as a guiding light in dark times. Though a seemingly far stretch from the menacing timbre and haunted frequencies, What Came Before goes further than nostalgia, placing emphasis on the more apparent experience of history’s true nature. Glimpses of light appear at times, but the honesty is laid bare that, for the most part, darkness remains. To construct this echo of the past, Fionnlagh makes use source material, own recordings, synthetic sounds and manipulated external artefacts. ’The Art of Disguise’ presents itself as an impassioned rallying cry, after the album’s bleak and uncertain exposition, while ‘Across the Pacific’ delivers the emotional resolve to be carried through the remainder of the story. Pieces like ’The Villa on the Cliff’ and ’This Storm Will Pass’ continue the thread of enthralling darkness, but with a greater clarity and direction. Nevertheless, the turbulence of the album as a whole could be met with any number of experiences, and what arises will be unique to each listener. His debut album under this alias, and in this genre, Mark Findlay has released numerous techno and drum & bass singles, transposing the darker side of his production into something more cinematic and thoughtful, a bold step backwards in time.