After over a decade of prolific recording and experimentation, English composer Robert Hampson decided to shelf his long-running Main project in 2006, citing that he'd become burdened by constant criticism and commentary about his relationship with the guitar. Even though Main grew from the ashes of Loop, Hampson's decidedly guitar-heavy sludge psych band, the instrument had gradually faded from Main's palette, with later albums relying on mysteriously sourced field recordings and intense sound processing, but no guitars. Ablation marks the return of Main, now rounded out with second member Stephan Mathieu, and the four lengthy pieces that make up the album pick up where the project left off, but also take it to new places of uncommonly haunted ambience. Titled only with roman numerals, the four pieces here shift spectrums at a barely perceptible rate, moving from hissy found sound to impenetrable clouds of thick ambient wash within the course of a movement. The 13-minute "II" opens with Fennesz-style digital glitches, emulating the sound of a field full of cicadas before abruptly dropping off into sparse waves of sub-bass and grating high-frequency noise. Main adapts an almost symphonic approach on the track, gliding gracefully from the harsher elements into pastures of uneasy ambient haziness as it moves along. The dire mood of Ablation culminates in its final movement, with long tones from bowed instruments competing with hiccuping electronic squelches before all sounds drown into a softly glowing drone. Main's return from dormancy is as strong if not stronger than anything that preceded it, with the organic noise of Ablation mirroring the darkest parts of nature and the human spirit without ever losing control of their implausibly dense and meticulously organized sound.