Friday, June 19, 2015

Cassette Review: Chaste "Assert Unity" (Lurker Bias)

[$6 // Edition of 9 //]

"Assert Unity" begins with the sound of plugging into an amp.   There is also a whirr static frequency and then we shift into static drone.    There is a skip, but then we're right back into the static drone.   A little bit of wind tunnel comes out, as does a little bit of screeching.    A frequency change brings out elements of R2D2 and then we are right back to the static drone again.   It grows louder and there are variations also where it sounds like the crumpling of paper.    Following the sound of the bug zapper it just sort of cuts off the end Side A.

On the flip side we open with some "Tom Sawyer" type of synth bombs.   These begin dropping like we're in a mine field.    There is also a mechanical, grinding quality to the sounds.   It's almost brooding on some level, but yet those initial synth bombs continue to drop.    It builds to haunting background moans, sure, but the story on Side B is really just the dropping of these synth bombs.

What Chaste offers on "Assert Unity" are two different sides with fairly clear themes on both.    Side A can simply be seen as the "static drone" side, but as I look out my window right now I see the trees blowing because it had just rained last night and there is something more to the piece by Chaste than simply standing outside in said wind with a recording device and pressing the red button.    There are enough little pieces mixed in for you to not get lost and bored in the drone and I like that about it.

Side B is what you could simply refer to as the "bomb dropping" side as those synth bombs just don't stop.   I'm not really sure that I've heard something like this before, outside of that one pop song about how "You dropped a bomb on me" that popular once, a long time ago, and it does add an interesting aspect to the music that is otherwise accompanying it.   In some respects I imagine someone simply pressing a button on a keyboard to create these synth bombs and as such it doesn't seem like a lot of effort, per se, but as with the static drone of Side A there is enough other factors to leave me impressed with the music on the whole.

And that's just exactly why I like this cassette by Chaste so much: because both sides are connected by that idea that seems so simplistic on paper, and yet, when it is executed and you hear it on this cassette it just becomes so complex.   Had this simply been the static drone on Side A and the bombs dropped on Side B you'd be reading a different review right now.   It is those little things that have made the difference in this gem.

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