Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Cassette Review: Maurizio Bianchi + Roadside Picnic "The Mind Is An Ancient Capital" (Los Discos Enfantasmes)

[$11.50 CAD to ship in the U.S. // Edition of 120 //]

After listening to the split between these two artists it seems only fitting now to listen to them collaborate.     I can only assume that this came after the split as well because after doing that split they probably decided upon joining forces to create something unique to both of them.

"The Mind Is An Ancient Capital" begins with sharp, glass-like feedback which has lasers mixed into it with some sort of growling.    There are Darth Vader-like breathing patterns and underwater taps.    Hollow footsteps echo throughout the halls and then there is also some static fog.    Slices begin cutting through in whooshes with whirrs.    There is some crackling and then crushing, breaking, compactor type sounds.   Sonar beeps take us back into that Darth Vader-like breathing and then there are these quiet squeaky drips which sound like some dank basement or sewer in a video game where the character idles.    With more clanking there are sounds of static bug zappers and then uplifting tones.

On the flip side we have sonar-like feedback start things off.   This goes into some of that static fog that probably has a better name but this is just what I call it.    It has slight variations but continues just in that hollow way for quite some time.     It's quiet with ideas of being in a boiler room or maybe a basement.

After a short break there are more restricted sounds of what was heard before and what I referred to before as the Darth Vader-like breathing as well.   It sort of gets cut off as it only comes through in bits and pieces with dark sort of synth tones in the background, fading in and out like the doppler effect.    It's part Transformers and part Return of the Jedi Atari game.    It continues with this sound, growing in and out, louder and softer, somewhat becoming whale sounds.

Another break but only for a moment and then the sound comes in which could partially be insects and just has that overall feedback in a kind of sharp way but not too sharp-- more like wind chimes or some kind of crystals I can't place.    It does pick up and get a bit sharper at times though.     This continues right up until the end, just various patterns of this, and it's hard to place exactly what type of setting this could be in.

Obviously my mind is taken underground with this one- into the sewers perhaps or a similar scenario where humanity is forced to live below the surface in order to survive.   But it is definitely full of enough that you should be able to put it on (recommended with headphones) and be taken to a place all your own.

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