This is My Music: Vol 7, Part 1 (Rainbow Electronics)
Æthenor Faking Gold And Murder (VHF) CD - Faking Gold And Murder is the strongest Æthenor long player since Deep in Ocean Sunk the Lamp of Light. Along for the ride this time is David Tibet of Current 93 (he's made more guest appearances on more records in the last year than in the previous 10 years combined) doing his cryptic apocalypse prose thing over Stephen O'Malley and company's dense swirls of electronics, synth, guitars and percussion. The atmosphere is grim and surreal as squiggly keys and prepared guitars dangle over jagged percussive spikes and massed cymbal gales. Minimal melodies materialize and seduce like sirens only to fade out and leave us lost once more and hurdling through space with only Tibet's lunatic narrator as our guide through this spontaneously improvised wasteland.
Emeralds What Happened (No Fun Production) CD - No Fun has definitely emerged of late as drone merchants of the finest kind of celestial transcendence. As has Oneohtrix Point Never, Ohio's Emeralds has been bouncing around those subterranean wormholes for a while now with bubbling concoctions of synth modulation meets minimal guitar backing to reveal luminous star portals to worlds rarely glimpsed in our dimension but apparently visible all the same. FIve tracks/almost an hour of continuous deep space meditational overtone. Definitely worth a listen for folks in awe of the golden age of Minimalism and early electro-washed Krautrock.
Esperik Glare As the Insects Swarm (Static Hum Records) 7" - An interesting new arrival on the Dada/noise/ambient tip, Esperik Glare is a one man sound sculptor hailing from somewhere deep in the Midwest. He comes from the Nurse With Wound / irr. app. (ext) school of domestic creepy crawlings, which means he keeps one foot planted in murky industrial waters, the other in more minimal found sound space. The title track is exactly what it promises -- a babbling brook of clicks, shivers and windy whooshes that brings its subject matter to life on a molecular level. It's basically impossible to tell what is making what sound, but the overall caustic atmosphere breathes with a Beginning of The End Complete air. The flip offers spooky minimal tones and synth drones beneath a spoken work description of said cataclysm that sounds almost like a sparser ambient answer to some of the scariest moments of Current 93's Dog's Blood Rising LP. Pretty tight.
Intransitive) CD - Jim Haynes first came to my attention as the "weirdo noise maker guy" in Thuja and via his fantastic ambient field recording work with his duo Coelacanth and contributions to the surrealist supergroop The Sleeping Mustache (wiith Steven Stapleton and Matthew Waldron among others). He also runs the Helen Scarsdale label (see the irr. app. ext. review below) out of his home base in San Francisco, which releases new music that falls somewhere in the minimal noise/ambient/industrial spectrum and pretty much always subliminally kicks ass. His recent Sever for Boston's Intransitive stretches out over four tracks that waver from machine hums massed with crumbling percussive clicks and crackles to more organic stretches that weave field recordings of wind and sifted earth into precise animated worlds where rationality and logic crumble away till all that remains is a glowing, effulgent aum. Like "looking" at the world on a subatomic scale through an electron stethoscope.
irr. app. (ext.) Kreiselwelle (Helen Scarsdale) CD - Oh, golly, this is just wonderful. An ode to dark joy, the third release in Matt Waldron's amazing trilogy assembled under the influence of German philosopher and psychologist Willhelm Reich is an absolute masterpiece of shifting mechanical sound dreams that alternates from warped nightmare throngs to the most stunning post NWW industrial mechanical pulses and back again. Kreiselwelle is a meticulously composed sonic investigation that spans nearly two years of collecting and collating data and assembling it into a piece of music that is alternately overpowering, resonating, horrifying, uplifting and in every way an amplification of the most mystical properties of existence itself. This is an industrial noise record. A surrealist music concrete Dadaist dreamhouse. A tunnel of love. A carousel of dreams. A world of sound. I love this CD!
Intransitive) CD - Nmperign is one of my very favorite duos when it comes to tearing down the walls between genres and breaking completely free from the restrictions of trad jazz idioms. Ostensibly a jazz duo (trio with the addition of sound artist Jason Lescalleet on reel to reel / see the brilliant Love Me Two Times 2CD, also on Intransitive), Ommatidia is actually its first studio recording as a duo in its 10 plus years of existence. These six pieces breathe with the wind, spatter with concussions of bursting raindrops and ultimately engender the spontaneous poetry of nature itself. That is Nmperign's great feat -- its ability to make jazz music that sounds unlike any other jazz music in the world, but utterly transfixes, draws the listener in and instead of providing a means of escape offers a portal to complete and total perceptible reality. It's the harmony of the spheres, as heard through the wind and captured on tape.
Dirter Promotions) CD - Steven Stapleton and all his ol' ghosties (Andrew Liles and David Tibet among them) bring out the dead with these four epics of messed up horror-ambient that are something of a return to form given the overall NWW catalog, including Stapleton and co.'s recent Gas-Huffing Blues, which teetered a bit too close to novelty schlock minus the mad genius that made the comparable Sylvie and Babs Hi-Fi Companion such a recommendable side trip through the Nurse With Wound multiverse. The Surveillance Lounge's four extended nightmares are closer in spirit and tone to the earlier dread atmospheres of long lost classics like Homotopy to Marie and the skeletal decay of Salt Marie Celeste, plus the more mechanical feel that helped make Thunder Perfect Mind such an inescapable industrial jackhammer. Then come foreign whispers and shrieking howls over foghorn drones and death-rattle percussion and we know we're slowly sinking into the nightmare muck. It'd all be a bit much if there wasn't such a captivating compositional depth to what's going on here. Somehow Nurse With Wound continues to not just matter but to give us a cerebral investigation into paranormal sound that more often than not hits the listener on a primal, gut level. Every time I listen to this in the dark, I think I see apparitions in the corner hiding in that fuzzy area between real and imaginary. This is a dangerous record.
Jim O'Rourke Long Night (Streamline) 2CD - Here's an early O'Rourke gem that finds our man lost in the space between the notes. This is some seriously static drone not for the faint of heart (or short of attention span), but those with an ear for texture, and the kind of sloowllly spiraling overtones that emanate from the heart of the darkest celestial night should find some haunted melodic progressions buried deep inside the seemingly static dissonance. With two discs topping out nearly 80 minutes each the listener is tested for sure but ultimately taps into a highly rewarding listening experience that's ideal for sleep or meditation, foreground or background reception. Long Night offers a boundless wall of glacial drift that ultimately serves as a worthy precursor to Mirror's impressionist tone work that would emerge a few years later. I think O'Rourke was just 21 when this was recorded. Deep, yo.