Wednesday, April 25, 2018
The first time I listened to this cassette it was one of the first sunny, warm days of Spring. I didn't have anywhere to be, but I decided to just go out for a walk and take this music with me. I made this circle of sorts- up one road, then turned down another only to come back down a road which runs parallel with the one I started on. It was definitely interesting listening to these sounds while so much went on around me, including people getting ice cream and a car nearly running me over. I definitely suggest giving this at least one listen in the earbuds.
"Passing Places" begins with this sound of squeals and just background noise as if we are outside and about to walk around. Some tones come through and it has an uplifting and relaxing type of sense to it. Guitar strums really make it feel holistic. Some screeches come through and yet it remains calm, ambient to an extent I would say. It then begins to sound as if the record is slowed down, water is dropping and just some eerie type of whirrs. Strums cut through in a loop and it has a rock feel to it. This goes into an electronic back and forth but the strums persist. It feels as if we are lost in space.
A more wavy, cutting synth comes through and then fades out. Audio clips come in next about the climate. It feels desolate and as if we are walking in a place where a lot used to be but no longer is (Which was somewhat true for me on my walk with this one) These sort of howling whirrs come through and it just really makes me think of some place as well which used to be woods and where animals lived and then all the trees got cut down and they put up these buildings. I asked my Dad once- because I used to live near such woods and they tore them down to build houses- where the animals go and I never got an actual answer. And then people wonder why they see bears in their backyard. You're in their backyard.
Magical trill takes me onto some fantastic journey now. Someone is talking about that voice inside their head and this can get really trippy if you listen to it under the proper circumstances. It sounds kind of like birds now as well... only not. This has a distinct sound within earbuds and coming out of speakers- don't ever forget that. We drift into an ambient cloud now. Choppy again, coming through the smoke. As this fades a word being spoken (I think it's a word) comes out in a loop and it sounds kind of disturbing, haunted. This takes us into a sound of darker strings. That ambient sound comes back only this time with some light screeches. We're into an "X-Files" feel here as well.
What's funny is, whenever I listen to this back now I try to remember where I was when I first heard certain parts of it. I walked up the entire first street of my walk (Which is kind of a main road and busy) and then turned left onto a side street which intersected with my main two streets. About halfway through my walk on that side street- the second street, which I actually used to live on for the record- was when Side A came to an end and I had to flip to Side B. I was right near this apartment complex across from the high school and I'm pretty sure people saw me fidgeting with my Walkman like "What does that guy have?" But it is also interesting that I was able to do half my walk on Side A, the other half on Side B though I got home before Side B ended (Which I say is because the way home was downhill) but it's still nice to know I can put this on to walk with because I like to have the longer albums you know, so I'm not coming back without music.
On the flip side are these ambient tones. Different tones come through next with vocals which I am unsure of whether or not they are saying actual words. Glass tones bring out singing now which sounds like it is coming from an old record player, though I cannot recognize it as being sampled from anything. Tones remain in place with a little bit of static skipping. Different vocals come out with whirrs and it's pretty trippy now. Sounds of water- maybe rain- take us into this deep, dark place now which could be that sort of underground boiler room feel.
Side B does come through in a more minimal way than Side A, but it just makes those haunted tones feel deeper, more vital. A scraping of a pipe comes out next through a drone. Vocals (or at least what sounds like them), tones and this steady rhythm make me feel as if this is some kind of transmission from the dead. Electric laser shocks come through to try and jolt me back to life (or maybe it is part of the alien attack). Singing which reminds me of an old hymn brings this one to an end and there is really more here to digest than I can explain without further review (And who knows, maybe I'll go back and write a different perspective of this one day) but you should be listening to this one as much as you can.