In The Holistic Approach's liner note awknowledgements, sole creator Robert Salchak thanks "the reviewers that don't label this as 'Dark Ambient.'" However he need not worry: it's not. This is the second Blind Twice release for Possessive Blindfold, and it's quite a departure from last year's The Demon Haunted World, the project's third release and first with the label. Whereas many parts of that disc could easily be pinned down as high calibre dark ambient -- I can see Salchak cringing in some corner as he hastily scrawls my name on his reviewer blacklist -- this new material expands considerably on those ideas, building and experimenting with a whole new range of sound. I'd almost go so far as to call it a mild reinvention of sorts. Esoteric electro with a level-headed, contemplative style.
Many of the songs are named for the voice samples repeated throughout them, and it's almost as though this speaking is used to fill the vocal void left by these instrumental pieces, however unnecessary that may be. The strongest vocal elements are sampled female choral loops on tracks such as "Point of Illumination" and "Memorable Field Trip," which are seamlessly entwined with the programming, adding a perfect depth and melody. "Exotic Interlude" stands out as a soothing mix of relaxed, tribal drumming, repetitive piano and shimmering strings that evokes the warmth of lying in the sun, though it still has a subtle, shady edge linking it to the darker tracks. Some of the keys would probably benefit from a more organic sound; the precision of a MIDI set-up can only do so much, and the tangible acoustics of a live piano are sometimes hard to match. Even so, the programming here is all top notch.
Heavily layered and densely constructed, The Holistic Approach doesn't jump out and blindside you the first time you play it. It weaves further into your mind with each listen, until eventually the talent and skill of Blink Twice is crystal clear.