Caught myself referencing Mirror in a few older posts, so I decided to re-visit this epic drone work by the always wonderful and always mysterious Andrew Chalk and Christoph Heemann. Mirror started up sometime around the late nineties and laid their first masterpiece (and still my favourite) Eye of the Storm onto vinyl in 1999, soon complimented by this release later that year. For five solid years to follow Mirror would release about two dozen albums, maintaining an aesthetic of meticulously hand crafted packages - that are an absolute pleasure to hold and gaze upon. The music sometimes dark and brooding while other times ethereal, but always stark, bare, minimal drone.
Ringstones was released in three editions on separate occasions. First edition of 600 numbered copies with two inserts, 1999. Second edition of 250 clear vinyl copies pressed in 2001, with a signed and numbered 12" x 12" screen printed textured insert- this edition. Third pressing of 200 copies on clear wax with two inserts, 2005. I'm sure they're all nice. The textured screened insert is gorgeous. Hand signed and numbered with the bottom edge of the insert fringed and dyed green. Doesn't get much better. Sadly it's now out of print.
Two icy side-long epics here. The A is a 26 minute dive into endless shade, a pulsing current flows atop distant metallic shimmer slowly building and decaying, reminding me of some of the more minimal David Jackman material, but undoubtedly the sounds only Mirror could conjure up. The flip plays out as an extension of the A side. I think the only proper way to grasp the album is to understand it as a whole, as one long movement of sound, the physical break in between sides acting only as a brief intermission to the entire peice. So mysterious and so lovely.