Bing & Ruth’s debut album, which was first released in a tiny run in 2010, has been reissued. City Lake features an 11-person ensemble — two clarinets, two cellos, two voices, bass, lap steel, tape delay, percussion, and piano — and the large lineup brings David Moore’s ambient-leaning compositions to life.
Moore is often compared to American minimalists like Steve Reich and Terry Riley, and not without reason; he is fond of repeating patterns and stalwart pedal tones, and his chord progressions are usually content to stay in one place, shifting from foot to foot. And, just like Reich and Riley, Moore’s own music doesn’t easily square with a concept like minimalism. Immersed in the billowing harmonics of City Lake, you don’t think of empty space, but of fullness. You don’t think of absence, but of presence. The dominant motif of “Broad Channel” may be the piano’s hollow open fifth, but the way he uses the rest of the instruments to color in that interval, you’re left with the impression of a sound that can’t be contained.