Drowning the Virgin Silence – Blue Noise C40 (Cae-sur-a)
This is a very stimulating tape. The fidelity is perfectly low overall for the styles put forth here, all in a classic home-taper vein, including cinematic industrial piano themes, zoviet france feelings, and other earthy psychedelic darkness.
‘Blue Noise’ is a side long stream of like themes centered around a discordant piano sogged by an echo box. Mechanical factory banging sounds are heard in the background, with support provided to the piano by what seems to be a synthesizer simulating a string section. The synthetic string section is encrusted with a layer of reverb and degradation, producing an early 1900’s film soundtrack texture for the piece overall. The distant sounds of metal banging or scraping in different timbres change over time, making miniature themes centered on the rhythms or tones suggested by the metals. Though this is all tense and, -as previously stated- discordant, there are moments when the elements harmonize in a beguiling way. What comes to mind is the soundtrack to a movie called Begotten, which came out in 1990. The soundtrack is beautiful and tense, being 98% foley sounds meshed with a simulated static of age, punctuated maybe twice by a short interlude of abstract ghostly tones that form a melodic line. The overall climate being of cold, alienating tension, the arrival of harmonious tones, however brief, has a bewitching effect. Adding the context created by the visual elements of Begotten, the psychological effects of introducing moments of harmony -however small- into otherwise atonal and unsettling audioscapes might become a bit more palpable to those who might otherwise be less sensitive. Blue Noise can be associated with whatever visual items are chosen by whoever might want to listen. I wanted to listen, and I saw strange midevil wedding dances brightly lit by outdoor sunlight around 8′ heaps of various melons repeatedly rotting and un-rotting in fast forward. (most things are pretty subjective)
These are great drone pieces emphasizing effected guitar tonalities. Each piece has its own unique structure of elements in different registers and is performed with proper inspiration and restraint, and it feels good, too. With this recording the sensual listening enjoyment – the feeling of the music, for me, at first automatically superseded any critical analysis of the music. This is something that signifies an exceptional work. Side B’s 3 pieces are similar in mood and texture to some of Robin Storey’s recordings (Zoviet France, Rapoon, Reformed Faction), but with more focus on sounds from a guitar. Absorbing thought-pieces of intelligent mechanical loops humanized by tonal earth echoes and an organic antique static.
Richard Vergez, responsible for all of the instrumentation and production of this recording, is a smart choice maker. This music is simple and disciplined, yet stretches well-stated moods to challenging poetic lengths. Supplies a very satisfying 40 minutes for the sensual and the analytical faculties of the discerning listener.
There is a wealth of pleasing listenables at his other online locations that I encourage anyone to enjoy.