Founded in January of 2010, Forgotten Backyard is the very much recent dark ambient project of Dennis, last name and whereabouts unknown – as well as his previous history as a musical artist. A clean slate then, very much in line with what he attempts to convey to the listener with this release. A bleakly desolate, industrialized and mechanized wasteland where all hope has been abandoned and machines are the only ones left to speak. Being a completely instrumental recording, the expressed goal of Cerulean Wasteland is to forge a unique atmosphere of darkness, emptiness and paranoia. Sometimes this is achieved, yet at other times I find myself wanting relief from the one-dimensionality of the music. I guess that when attempting to make music of true emptiness and desolation it is an unavoidable by-product that the result oft-times becomes empty and desolate in and of itself.
Nevertheless, I could not help wanting to hear more contrast and depth to the recording as a whole – and perhaps even a more claustrophobic and threatening atmosphere to reflect the lofty goals expressed. That said, ambient recordings are not usually my cup of tea either as “Unknown Rain Ritual” is for me the track that counterpoints the rest of the release. It is a finely crafted soundscape of rain pouring down with the more or less incessant pulsing of what sounds like a delapitated engine as well as intermittent recordings of slamming metal. Then it too dwindles into nothingness. Well done! The moody final track “White Mirrors Behind the Dark Clouds” really does the release justice as well.
All in all, I had a hard time placing this record and I do have a sneaking suspicion that it requires the correct mind-set to appreciate it as it is meant to be heard. No doubt avid fans of the genre will find it an interesting and fulfilling release, but for me it was a mixed experience. Other than this I noticed a few telltale software-generated effect glitches during the recording, which – intentional or not – only serve to distract me from the music and the intent behind it.