Tuesday, August 26, 2014

CD REVIEW: Mahler Haze “Counterfactual” (Personal Archives)

                Before listening to this CD, I felt like I’d known Mahler Haze for a lifetime.   I’ve only reviewed one previous CD from Personal Archives and then I also did an MP3 review from a sold out cassette, but I still feel as if I’ve been listening to and reviewing so much more music than that and the fact that there are only two prior reviews coming up with a Blogger search amazes me.  Maybe it’s because I keep inviting my friends to like the Mahler Haze Facebook page. 

                “Counterfactual” begins as a heavily distorted version of Rush.   It’s the sound of electricity.   It is drone, yet somehow also wavy.   It brings to mind The Who and cranking it to 11.   I used clever phrasing in my notes like Futuristic Bugzapper and Jem & the Monograms, though I’m not sure what the last one means exactly.

                Whether it is heavier or closer to the ambient, quieter side of things, there is this constant feel of technology within these songs.  I called it a Facts Machine, but there are these little bits that remind me of nanobytes.   As much as this can bring out the familiarity of an old sea captain’s dirge, it can just as easily bring out the MOTU Key or sound as if we’re hacking into a ghost main frame.    There are also these little noises that make me think of robotic bugs.   My first thought was on robotic beetles, but then I remembered the band and thought that might draw some confusion.

                This is anti-vaporwave, a demonstration in how hacking can be fun but it doesn’t have to sound like techno and all that.   As a user of computer this pleases me and I enjoy coding to it.   If you do not share my passion for technology then perhaps this CD will show you how. 

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