When Sound Generates Light is the debut album from Bradford-based Laboratory Noise, originally released in the summer but re-released in December for reasons unknown to anyone but the band and the label. Self recorded, mixed and produced, and still made up of the same 13 tracks as the original release back in August, When Sound Generates Light is an ethereal collection of layered atmospheres and soundscapes that is so incredibly assured that it belies the fact this is the debut album by this band.

The first thing that strikes you after your first listen to this record is just how many different emotions Laboratory Noise are capable of portraying. Drama, melancholy and tension are all prevalent on this record, and because of the different sounds the bands goes through it's very hard to categorise this band in any genre other than 'alternative'. From the start there is the My Bloody Valentines-esque shoegazey number 'Mae', which is then closely followed by 'Lost In Battles', a menacing and much more urgent track more in the vein of someone like Team Ghost. There are some incredibly beautiful tracks as well; in 'Tesla' we see lead singer Paul McNulty collaborate with backing vocalist Kerry Ramsay in an achingly pretty ballad, similarly so in 'Polara In Time Stereo' with its jangly guitars and dual vocals layered over some wonderful atmospheric backdrops. The addition of a female vocalist really adds a touch of subtlety to this bands sound, a trick possibly often missed by many of the male-dominated bands in this genre. However, the most intriguing track on the album is the well-named 'Dream Sequence', all 15 minutes and 29 seconds of it, plonked right in the middle of the record and seems to separate the two halves of the album. This could be an EP in its own right, and takes the listener on a trip through an echoey and dramatic world that transforms the rest of the album. After this, the record is a lot more hazy and dreamy; 'Here, She Is Evergreen' and the more melancholic but also brilliantly epic 'The Value Of Experiments' possibly summing this up best.

The only problem with When Sound Generates Light is the length. It is a really long record, perhaps unnecessarily so, and could maybe benefit from being a bit shorter. 82 minutes is a long time for a modern record to be, although this wouldn't be so much of a problem if it wasn't for the fact that it does seem occasionally to dip towards the prog-rock end of the spectrum, which means by the end of the record it does get a bit tedious, especially third-to-last track 'Colder'. It is long, but it's also very good. Inevitably, there are a couple of bad songs but the record is so well-written and cleverly produced that it belies the fact it's the debut release from this band. There are many very credible influences on display here and arguably if nothing else what When Sound Generates Light represents most is a reminder of how many talented bands there have been and how relevant they still are.