AMN Reviews: More Eaze & Claire Rousay – If I Don’t Let Myself Be Happy Now Then When? (2020; Mondoj)

More Eaze (Mari Maurice) and Claire Rousay are experimentalists in the true sense of the word, with this album exemplifying their breadth of reach. Releasing March 10, 2020, If I Don’t Let Myself Be Happy Now Then When? is a set of three sound collages with found object percussion, electroacoustic manipulations, avant-pop guitar-and-vocal breaks, and overall weirdness. Not so much songs or compositions, these tracks are structured noises with varying textures that mutate and morph throughout their lengths.

Case in point, Pre-op has a more-or-less continuously evolving background comprising rhythmless percussion and electronics with processed vocals rising now and then. But it ends with a dense, liquidly wall of noise sculpted from a wide variety of sources. Post-op follows with a set of overlapping drones and some sparse vocals, with crackling electronics in the background. The latter builds to dominate the track in its second half.

There is a compelling fragile vulnerability to these pieces, and more than a bit of wistful melancholy. Classifications other than that are difficult – perhaps some off similarities to William Basinski – but Maurice and Rousay are off on their own strangely addictive and entropic tangent.