PRINS THOMAS – Principe del Norte 4LP+CD
For an album with a royal pedigree right there in its title, Prins Thomas' Principe del Norte is a record with nothing to prove. The shortest of its nine untitled tracks is nearly eight minutes long, and three run to 13 minutes or more. You don't get the sense the track lengths stem from any sort of desire to grandstand; it just looks like Thomas didn't much feel like editing himself. The whole album runs more than an hour and a half, beats halting and restarting, synths drifting willy-nilly over muted basslines, and arrangements wandering free as clouds. It is a vision of ambient music in bathrobe and slippers, slurping milk straight from the carton at the all-night grocery; it is The Dude of ambient.