I’ve got a brief history with Madalyn Merkey in that, at some point, I was going to release a tape of hers on Digitalis. I’m actually still a little miffed it never happened since the master for said tape was fucking great. That being said, she’s gone on to bigger and better things and her new record on New Images looks to be her boldest statement yet. “Archipelago” is the first taste from the album and it leaves a mark. Sparse yet methodic synthetics float among electronic debris. Computer generated drones and soundscapes find homes within these warm, padded walls like an enemy confined to a world of bubblegum and cotton candy. Something about “Archipelago” is weirdly sweet even if the deeper, denser read on it is another thing entirely. Minimalist approaches are something I’d never have guessed Merkey would excel at, but she’s always been artist to push herself and surprise. I can’t wait to hear what the rest of this record holds.