On Unfurl, the Australian and LA-Based artist RY X continues with his alternative ambient tone that pushes organic development from the music we have seen previously. RY X touches the heart on this album with a lightness that he is known for and a musical fragility illustrated in his intimate live shows. This album is no different, with programmed percussion meeting whispering vocal arrangements that span across genres.

‘Body (Ambient)’ opens the album as an overture, much like before with the title track on 2016 release Dawn. Legato strings stroke above the space with a repeated lightly played piano that can do nothing less than evoke a feeling of wonder and relaxation.

Lead single ‘Untold’ is our first taste of electronics and the soothing falsetto of RY X that is delicate but with lyrical direction. Floating electric guitar chords stagger onwards with a movement that testifies to the album title. With ‘Bound’ we are reminded to notice the small details placed so intricately in the spectrum of the mix. Plucking synths rise above a growling bass synth that is likely unheard unless looked for. Vocal choirs built from his voice are used with a cinematic approach and add to the contrasts between the overwhelming and empty.

‘Body Sun’ is one of the stand-out tracks on the album, featuring an expectant minimalist approach to the writing and arrangement. Similar to previous tracks like ‘Salt’, RY X uses an off-beat piano rhythm that protrudes the delicacy of his voice. In this way he summons similarities in tracks like ‘Hounds’, which are reminiscent of the previous simplicity of ‘Only’, with a colourfully strummed acoustic guitar that is shiver worthy. RY X is remaining vigilant in his integrity to keep a sound that is tremulous yet unfaltering.

Though, occasionally, tracks like ‘The Water’ do have a sense of monotony if found without emotional attachment. With the rebirth of a second album comes a need to refresh, and RY X does this better on some tracks than he does on others. ‘Mallorca’ is an example of the heart-wrenching lyricism, where RY X intones “I went into the cases - I drank it all and bled it out.”

Moving towards the close of the album, ‘Sun (Ambient)’ is the full-circle-motion of an overture that keeps the album’s continuity as art and not only music. ‘Fumbling Prayer’ is a closing moment of haunting organ swells that are reminiscent of previous collaborations with Frank Wiedemann even if withheld with a gentle crackling that signifies its fading conclusion.

In short - Unfurl is much like RY X’s previous record Dawn, though tinged with moments of evolution. Lined with a rawness that could be sometimes overlooked; it seems to find solace in giving an emotional response to me from its creation. After all - isn’t that why we create it?