Umberto is the sound-voyage of Matt Hill, who’s also been known to throw down with drone-master Justin Wright’s Expo ’70 project. On this first release under the name Umberto, Hill has created a score for a Giallo all'italiana film that captures the horror and humor that set the sonic-mood for genre-masters like Carpenter, Fulci, and Argento. The spaced-out synths and casioxploitations produce a dark-laugh vibe, and the beat frequently slashes in to thrill it up, especially on standout track “The Child.” While it’s ultimately impossible to discuss this film/sound tradition without touching on its comedic qualities, we’d be mistaken to overlook the skill Hill exhibits on “From The Grave…” The pacing and execution are impressive, building up patiently, maintaining the suspense from “Opening Titles” to “End Credits,” and provoking vivid images of some maniacal mutant/man shiv-slinger creeping in on an unsuspecting bather and escaping to a midnight-blood-cult-ritual-fortress on the moon. If your neighbors aren’t already aware that there’s some sinister shit going on behind your apartment door, slipping “From The Grave…” into your tape deck and cranking it up should eliminate their doubt.
Sonic Meditations, run by Justin Wright, house their releases in excellent artwork. This album is no exception, displaying on its cover an appropriate illustration by Ashley Lande that reveals what the crazed character running through these soundworlds might look like. 7/10 -- Elliott Sharp (3 March, 2010)