The new album from Bibio, Ribbons, out on Warp on Friday, is the sort of release that defies easy categorization. Bridging ambient with folk-rock, Bibio offers up here a record that is warm and affecting.
"The Art of Living" sees Stephen Wilkinson singing over a supple sort of hook, while the more delicate "Ode to a Nuthatch" is pure folk, easy to fall into. Elsewhere, "Watch The Flies" manages to work itself into a brisk ramble, while the lovely "It's Your Bones" veers into territory once occupied by Simon and Garfunkel and The Incredible String Band. Wilkinson, however, seems more interested in pursuing his own style rather than simply let himself drift into an established genre here on Ribbons, with lots of the material, like "Curls", subtly mixing in faint traces of the sort of production or electronic effects that earlier pioneers on this label favored.
A record that seems tailor-made for Springtime, Ribbons is a fine surprise from a label that has consistently offered up boundary-pushing artists. Bibio here pursues the sort of music that is sure to please fans of Warp, as well as those who maybe have not considered that the label could put out something this gentle and affecting.
Ribbons by Bibio is out on Friday via Warp Records.
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[Photo: Joe Giacomet]