When you listen to a cassette such as eloine’s “brillo hedge maze” from Unread Records, you can’t listen so much as to what is going on within the music and sounds you hear, but rather what is going on in the background—you need to read between the lines, if you will.
The first image I place in my mental movie upon hearing this tape is the sound of paper crumpling, which can also turn into the sound of crackling fire in the way that the tape itself might be burning. There are some guitar scratches and this turns into a coal miner’s orchestra in a hurry. For a while then, we take a journey inside a box making factory before the water drips and the first side is ended with a little funky noise, a rainstick and just the overall sound of water in a gutter.
Thus we can conclude that the first half of this cassette is about life. It is the birth (the fire) turning into a life being lived through working different jobs and going through various different emotions on the life spectrum—the water dripping could be crying for example.
With the first side being birth and the living of life, it becomes evident that we are transitioning into the later years and eventually death on the flip side of things. Whether it be the sound of horse feet clopping, the tick-tocking of the clock or the rustling of pots and pans, it is difficult to deny that any of these things signify something other than the fact that death is going to come for all someday.
By the time the tape ends, it does complete its journey onto the other side of the spectrum as we hear the rattling bones of death. What more you could really ask for in a piece such as this other than to be taken on a story full circle I do not know. I also do not know why it is full circle other than that they say “the circle of life”, when life seems to be more of a line between two points, which are birth and death, but anyway I digress.
This is something that really should be heard to be fully understood, experienced and overall just affected by bringing us closer to those feelings- those realizations- that one day we ourselves and everyone we know will die. How we think about that, our understanding of it and acceptance of it is really left to the individual, but in many ways you could then say that this inspirational.
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