Bonnie McNairn and Jim Wilson make up Voice of Eye and have been exploring a shared idiosyncratic sonic vision since 1989. Throughout their storied career this duo has realized albums and live performances over a range of moods and atmosphere. From macabre to astringent to Ambient, their work possesses a primal quality rarely heard in music - as if freshly dispatched from a long past. Out of the darker quarter comes The Portland Improvisations (55'50") - a weirdly beautiful, restless meditation of poetic minimalism. It may take a while to register how quietly devastating this music truly is. Created with acoustic instruments and voice, then rendered by way of some digital mysticism this album creates a pleasurably shivery aural experience. With its slow procession of rising and decaying tones, mingling with ethereal voices and plucked notes, The Portland Improvisations seems more a ceremony of sacred sounds than an assembled piece of music. The deliberate pacing, a sense of consonance surrounded by dissonance, the howling electronic wash replaced by warm rounded timbres, are all part of a fascinating listening experience. Some areas of this work are like an epic, while others a haiku. With such a lingering power, the sounds and forms on this album will haunt the listener long into the night.
- Chuck van Zyl/STAR'S END 16 September 2010