Friday, March 20, 2015

Cassette Review: Dhampyr "Cotton Epistles : Prologues To A Nonoscillatory Cosmotheosophic Oxycaryum Purge Physics; or, Three Shrinking Butterfly Preludes in C#" (5cm Recordings)

At the risk of sounding lazy, I want everyone to know that I am copying and pasting that title every time I put it somewhere.   It made the link pretty long and is also giving the latest Fiona Apple album a run for its money on longest title award although, you know, that last Fiona Apple album was something I listened to only once and then quickly tried to forget about.

This cassette by Dhampyr begins with an audio clip and then transitions into a piano piece.   It picks up with blissful loops in an electronic sense that could be an instrumental version of The Prodigy only is seemingly harder and thus more closely related to something which I cannot describe.    High pitched sounds come out in a combustion way and then an audio clip is spliced in with "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" being sung complete with crying.   

You know, I don't read as much about this site on the internet as I probably should, but one post did come up in my newsfeed once on Facebook and it had Dhampyr mentioning a review I had written.   Someone commented and said that they wished I hadn't compared Dhampyr with something emo like mewithoutYou.    If you want to know why Dhampyr is compared to something you deem to be "emo" then just go back and listen to Dorothy cry her eyes out, son.

Ambient tones come through next in that hollow glass way followed by the chugging of a locomotive.    Darker guitar notes come in, like something out of Metallica, and then we take a turn for the almost country side of things with a rhythm that seems to saunter.    This becomes something with a bit more of the drama, like the soundtrack to the original "Beverly Hills 90120" because, yes, they felt the need to remake that show.   I somehow remember Dhampyr being heavier than this but perhaps I am mistaken.     

As Side B begins it has the quiet calm of static which is joined by some of those somber, relaxing tones.  In many ways it does make me feel like it would be played while one was at a day spa though I cannot speak from experience.    It's just so quiet and not what I expected from Dhampyr but it still just so good.    Some blasts come through as I begin to think it might pick up, but it continues to drone, floating through space without a care in the world or perhaps even a way of breathing.   It's like an amplified version of releasing a helium filled balloon into the sky and watching it drift up, only at a slower pace.

Though it is fair that the piece evolves into a loop of drums and synth type of sounds that could be from the soundtrack to something from the 1980's only at a sped up rate.    This changes into a driving type of drum march that is equal parts metal and hip hop (It could go either way, I'm not really sure)  I've been listening to the David Guetta song "Rise" a lot lately because, you know, Wrestlemania season, and I am getting a little of that vibe from it.

Things do pick up to please those looking for such sounds as we get into this somewhat distorted guitar riff that could be from one of the faster paced songs on "The Fragile" era Nine Inch Nails (almost like the cover of "I'm Afraid of Americans", but not)  And I'm sure there might be something else on the "Resident Evil" soundtrack I could compare this with but every time I try to learn more about heavy electronic music my mind ends up elsewhere.  

A few more sounds of which I cannot quite explain but tend to loop and wind end this cassette and I'm not one to ever really read back past reviews before reviewing something new because I feel it affects my judgement but I can say that I do recall Dhampyr sounding heavier than this on prior releases but it doesn't really matter because good is good and this is damn good.  

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