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AMN Reviews

AMN Reviews: Ajna – The Enigma of Sirius (2022; Winter-Light)

Ajna produces quintessential electroacoustic and cinematic ambient music. The Enigma of Sirius is heavy on synth-based drones, with rattling elements and processed random noise spectra in the foreground or background. Said drones are deep and bassy, often having a voice-like quality that resembles chants rather than plain old chords. The rattling comes across as acoustic percussion rather than processed noises, but lacks a clear beat or repetitive structure. The noise can be spiky and forms waves that ebb and flow. But long-held notes ultimately dominate, exhibiting many textures and tones, all dark and haunting.

The album tells a story of ancient cultures coming in contact with extraterrestrials. Nonetheless, it can be received in many ways, including as a soundtrack to an imaginary sci-fi / horror movie. Thus, the overall feel is cosmic in nature, but with a lingering sense of danger.

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AMN Reviews

AMN Reviews: New Experimental Ambient (Jeļena Glazova and Daniel McClennan)

Ambient music takes on many forms and characteristics. We often focus on the heavier, weirder, and darker types. Below are two releases, one upcoming and the other from September, that explore this wide-open musical space.

Jeļena Glazova – The Dream of Hans Castorp (2023; HEM Archive)

It has been four years since we last reviewed anything from sound artist and poet Jeļena Glazova. Here, she reinterprets Thomas Mann’s The Magic Mountain in a set of dense, textural drones across three tracks that are each 20 minutes in length. The oscillations shimmer and vary in frequency, sounding at times either mechanical or organic. Glazova builds and evolves these pieces deliberately and with palpable tension. From oppressive walls of sound to a burbling soup, she integrates various tempos and levels of dynamism. The result resembles electroacoustic experimentation as much as it does drone. Thus, there is not much in the way of traditional melody or harmony herein. Nonetheless, we are all that much better off for it. The Dream of Hans Castorp will be released on January 10, 2023.

Daniel McClennan – Unfurling Redemption (2022; Cruel Nature Recordings)

On this album, composer and sound artist Daniel McClennan employs a combination of drones, electroacoustic elements, fortepiano dynamics, and cut-ups to create a detailed and lively mix of textures and soundscapes. These amalgams include brief passages of melodies, chords, beats, rumbling structures, and processed static. But perhaps the most prevalent features are the sudden waves of sound that burst from your speakers, giving the album a strangely cinematic flair. But to be sure, this is experimental music. As Unfurling Redemption goes on, piano takes a more prevalent role, often with minimalist repetition of themes. If McClennan’s goal was to make a 25-minute EP that does not have a clear sonic reference point, then mission accomplished.

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AMN Reviews

AMN Reviews: Various Artists – Cryo Chamber Collaboration – Tsathoggua (2022; Cryo Chamber)

Nothing says Christmas like a 2CD set inspired by an elder god from the Lovecraftian Cthulhu Mythos. Tsathoggua was actually created by writer Clark Ashton Smith and later referred to by H.P. Lovecraft. Here, the Cryo Chamber label has once again – for the 9th time in 9 years – reappropriated Lovecraft in collaboration form. Not a compilation, but two 50-minute tracks jointly composed and recorded over the course of a year by a group of artists notable in the cinematic drone and electroacoustic ambient space (see below for a list).

Tsathoggua the album begins with a rumbling, heavy ambiance and percussion patterns that vary from martial to tribal to unstructured. In addition to layered synth, passages incorporate stringed instrumentation playing Middle Eastern styled themes. Bassy drones are nearly omnipresent including during more experimental and improvised passages of sculpted noise. Dark and haunting soundscapes emerge, evoking the utter emptiness of outer space. While probably not intentional, perhaps this can be taken as an allegory for some of humanity’s more pointless or destructive aims and inclinations.

Crackling effects emerge from these atmospherics, accompanied by washes of static. Eventually, the effects move from background to foreground, constructing and deconstructing forms at the quantum level. Muted guitar riffs provide gritty rhythms that manage to have enough variability to avoid repetition. Sounds of metal upon metal reverberate while the tone as a whole maintains an organic nature. Other moments have an airy character before descending back into darkness.

Tsathoggua will be released on December 27, and is nearly two hours of unholy bliss. Hang a Cthulhu ornament from your holiday tree, tuck in your tentacles, and have a listen.

Credits: Atrium Carceri, Kammarheit, Dronny Darko, protoU, Dead Melodies, Onasander, God Body Disconnect, Council of Nine, RNGMNN, Northumbria, Void Stasis, In Quantum, Alphaxone, Neizvestija, Skrika, Dahlia’s Tear, Gydja, Kolhoosi 13, Lesa Listvy, Tineidae, and Apocryphos.

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AMN Reviews

AMN Reviews: Various Artists – Anthology Of Contemporary Music From South Africa (2022; Unexplained Sounds Group)

This compilation of electroacoustic, drone, ambient, and experimental music from South Africa begins strong. Kalaharakiri from nonentia starts with a gritty layering of pulsating drones. Thick synths come in, as do portamento chants. The result is music that could initially be categorized as influenced by the Berlin School but with a trip to the far south. A singular track that spans multiple genres, it is representative in scope – though not sound palette – of this latest sound mapping compilation from Unexplained Sounds Group.

In contrast, other contributors focus on bells and tuned percussion, sculpting of sampled noises combined with bleeps and bloops, blending of flute or electronics and percussion, as well as an electric guitar and chime based piece. Some of these efforts feature repetition in a minimalistic fashion, that slowly embeds itself into your psyche. Others are more overt and exploratory, employing improvisation and extended techniques. Tide of the Insects from Chantelle Gray is another stand-out offering, with layers of staccato buzzing over drones and a steady bassline. There is a return to African chant on Nardus Niemand’s The Great Southern Cross which combines unusual percussion instruments, sweeping synths, and song into one of the stronger tracks.

Anthology Of Contemporary Music From South Africa shines the most where the artists bring together indigenous music and modern experimentation. I’ve had the pleasure of listening to this album dozens of times over the last two months. It is a fresh and quite listenable take on difficult music. Very well done.

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AMN Reviews

AMN Reviews: Philip Jeck – Resistenza (2022; Touch)

The singular talent of Philip Jeck was a thing to behold.  Hearing this posthumous document of two live performances I can’t help but think hell… this guy deserves to stand on the same pedestal as some of the great sound organizers like Parmegiani, Bayle, and Ferrari.  The word “organizer” is not enough though.  Parm, Bayle, and Ferrari were composers… composers of the highest order, plain and simple.  Jeck was too, but he just chose to do it without the typical tools of the trade of the GRM (and others) crowd.  A couple of cheap, heavy-duty workhorse turntables and a large collection of old vinyl records are all one really needs to know about Philips’ M.O.  This was the basic stuff that was augmented by an equally basic Casio sampling keyboard and other mundane delay and looping stomp boxes and… that’s it.  That’s what it took to deliver the world to his doorstep and damn…did he make full use of it!

Resistenza is released by Touch (the label that has made it possible for the world to hear his entire catalog of works) on what would have been his 70th birthday.  It grants us a front-row seat for two live performances that further cement Philip Jecks’ particular genius… not that it needs cementing as any listen to past albums would attest to.  The first track, simply titled “Live in Torino” is a 36-minute sonic walk through an amorphous cloud of memory, nostalgia, triumphant joy, and deep melancholic beauty.

The first time I heard the “Live in Torino” set I just let it have its way with me.  I knew I was in for some of that special kind of weirdness that only Jeck could provide, and it was there.  You know… how he drapes everything in a patina of “the good ole days” where life held a certain potential… personal to each listener but common in the way that somehow, things were better back then.  It’s that hauntological future… the one that somehow got away, and you start asking yourself how in the world did I get to this point, in the here and now?  This is all a Jeck-ian trademark and it’s present in everything I’ve heard from him.

So yes, in that respect “Live in Torino” is new/old Jeck.  Something that a fan would expect.  Crazy that the expectation is there to begin with… like, ho hum, another typical Philip Jeck walk down memory lane and oh, have a raw emotional trigger point to mull over in the process.  Sure, that happens all the time in music, right?  RIGHT?

So, the write-up could pretty much end here by saying Resistenza is a must listen.  Music that succeeds this strongly at the “feelings” level should be and IS enough… full stop.  But, after going through my own little catharsis, further listens were of a more analytical nature… I know, imagine that?  I wanted to try and disassemble the music and search for that element that makes it tick.  “Live in Torino” ebbs and flows and, within its many moving parts is the walking path a listener can take that holds them all together.  The changes that the piece goes through, and there are quite a few… all work together in painting that memory-stimmed panorama I spoke about above.  Funneling down, it’s the quiet little details, the workers within the music that are the essential building blocks.  The controlled use of the clicks, pops, and scratches in the records he uses, the choices of old, haunted ghostly sounds from those records, the speeds in which he plays them, the way he piles these sound events on top of each other as they loop into infinity, the way he fades from one motif to another… I don’t have the foggiest idea technically what he’s doing but the hard listens I’ve done were incredibly fascinating, in a mind-bending sort of way.  What makes the music tick?  Well, that’s the wrong question.  It just does… and somehow Philip Jeck has tapped into it.

The second piece on the album, “The Long Wave, Live at Liverpool Philharmonic” is a 27-minute duet with pianist Jonathan Raisin.  In contrast to the many faceted dips and swerves in “Live in Torino”, this piece has Jeck sticking, at least for the most part to providing a mid to high-range drone as a bedrock for Raisin’s piano excursions.

The piano is placed high in the mix, certainly higher than Jeck’s electronics so it’s harder to key on whatever detail he’s bringing into the piece other than a sense of smooth smears of sound.  This sympathetic base serves its purpose because… by way of contrast, the piano seems to be the star here.  Raisin’s playing uplifts this piece into the cinematic zone.  I’m occasionally reminded of pianist Ketil Bjørnstad’s water-themed albums from the 90’s on ECM.  “The Long Wave”, while lacking in the ghostly, time folding within itself moments of “Live in Torino” still works wonders.  It taps into the limbic system from the direction of something more… hopeful.  A sense of yearning, or longing for a redemption that just might be within grasp.  We can all use some of that!

Resistenza is a superb document showing two different, but equally great faces of Philip Jeck.  This release comes with my HIGHEST recommendation.

Mike Eisenberg
Meisenberg@hotmail.com
Twitter: @bigaudio999

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AMN Reviews

AMN Reviews: Two From Moonjune (Reuter Motzer Grohowski and Mahogany Frog)

Moonjune Records has put out dozens of releases since 2001. The label typically focuses on progressive rock and fusion-inflected music. Here are two standout albums from 2022.

Reuter Motzer Grohowski – Bleed (2022)

Anything involving drummer Kenny Grohowski is worth a listen. This trio release is no exception, with Tim Motzer on guitars, Markus Reuter on touch guitars, and all three providing keyboard overdubs. Here, Grohowski is able to supply his signature busy and complex drumming to fusion instrumentals with his bandmates. Motzer or Reuter produces heavily distorted lines often while the other generates acoustic harmonies and atmospherics. The themes are clever and compelling, catchy and assertive, varying from all-out jams to quieter interludes. While not a ton of new ground is broken on Bleed, the execution is exquisite and makes for a pleasant way to spend 70 minutes.

Mahogany Frog – Faust (2022)

I am admittedly unfamiliar with this Canadian instrumental four-piece, though they have been around for over 20 years with at least 8 albums released. Faust is a soundtrack to the classic silent film of the same title. As such, it is a brooding mix that is often slow-paced and atmospheric, with gradually developing themes, electronics, and drones accompanying the guitar / guitar / bass/ drums lineup (all four members contributed keyboards as well). And yet, this album eschews much of what might typically be expected from its main instrumentation. Put another way, this is vocal-less prog rock without any of the overblown sophomoric moves that can accompany that style. While there are nods to psychedelia and fusion as well, the band never stays too long in the same place. This is a very long album, reaching upwards of 80 minutes, but it is also a diverse and darkly enjoyable listen.

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AMN Reviews

AMN Reviews: Sonologyst – A Dream Inside a Dream (2015; Unexplained Sounds Group)

Continuing our exploration of Sonologyst’s back catalog, A Dream Inside a Dream is a 2015 effort. This one consists of understated and quiet electronics and drones with a heavy emphasis on electric guitar. Percussion and voices also play a role on individual tracks over its 50+ minute span. Note that this recording was reissued in 2016 with two additional tracks.

But what sets A Dream Inside a Dream apart is how the guitar is incorporated. For the most part, it is undistorted and played using extended techniques. These are low enough in the mix not to dominate, and serve more of a rhythmic rather than melodic purpose. The result is the plucking, picking, and popping of individual notes and note patterns (with processing of course). In conjunction with long-held synth chords and percussive effects, this produces a wistful and plaintive set of atmospherics.

Harmonics in a lucid dreaming brain is an excellent example of this, and includes sparse percussion from Massimo Discepoli. In contrast, Beyond the Veil begins with tuned percussion, but rapidly integrates deep, dark drones with harsher textures, as well as throat singing and other vocalizations from Lorenzo Gasparella. The title track is split over two non-contiguous segments, each exhibiting even more electroacoustic experimentalism than most of the other pieces. The second part, in particular, includes a multitude of found-object sounds and manipulations, in addition to subtle yet suffocating drones. Slow frost – A mental recognition into the past is also quite exploratory with processed guitar and passages of static.

A Dream Inside a Dream is inspired by a quote from J. L. Borges describing a layering of dreams that also inspired movies like Inception and The Matrix. Thus, what we have on this album is a detailed sonic exploration of landscapes so alien that they span the waking, sleeping, and hypnogogic worlds. Very well done.

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AMN Reviews

AMN Reviews: Sonologyst & Kshatriy – Time is the Enemy (2016; Unexplained Sounds Group)

Before Raffaele Pezzella became known for running the Unexplained Sounds Group of labels and curating experimental music from around the world, he recorded over a dozen albums as Sonologoyst (a stage name that he still uses in recent efforts). Time is the Enemy is a collaboration with Russian sound artist Bulychev Sergey. As I explore the Sonologyst back catalog, I hope to find time to write more about it, as Pezzella and company have put out some very strong material that remains overlooked by many.

Pezzella and Sergey draw from history, philosophy, literature, and film, mostly sticking to esoteric concepts. The largely-improvised music fits this mold, with a heavy emphasis on experimental drone and electroacoustic ambient. Four of the five tracks are collaborations of this duo, while one was the effort of only Sergey (though it appears that Pezzella provided editing).

The overall sound is fairly consistent throughout, with low-frequency drones virtually constant while the upper registers incorporate a more diverse set of features. The pace is deliberate, haunting rather than hurried.

Said features include cosmic, burbling synth, foreboding chords, sculpted feedback, and various cracklings, rumblings, and blended static. Unaltered Mind combines slow-moving chord patterns, feedback, and electroacoustic elements in a foreboding, cinematic mix. Venus Smile employs chanted vocals, cavernous synth, and shimmering static. Self Luminosity is the solo effort from Sergey, with a watery and spacious feel, consisting of a handful of synth themes with fluttering effects. Chronopolis employs dark chording, harsher tones, and discordant textures. The title track rounds things out with a more pastoral approach yet still exudes disquiet. Reminiscent of Robert Rich circa 1995-2000, the synth is accompanied by clicking and popping effects as well as high-frequency waves.

Despite being six years old, Time is the Enemy sounds fresh and is a more than worthwhile way of spending 50 minutes. But be warned, as soon as you finish the album, you’ll want to start it up again.

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AMN Reviews: Natasha Barrett/Nils Henrik Ashiem – Where Shockwaves Become Sound (2022; Bandcamp)

When does a shock wave become sound? When does pressure create impact? When do lies spread faster than truths and channels of social communication become vessels of disinformation? What happens in the medium on the other side of the supersonic boundary? Beginning with the air pressure inside the massive organ, Where Shockwaves Become Sound is about these things – the reality of physics felt on our body and the waves of disinformation that infiltrate society.

From the Bandcamp page.

Where Shockwaves Become Sound is the end-of-year offering by Natasha Barrett.  It’s a piece for pipe organ (performed by Nils Henrik Ashiem) and electroacoustic sound by NB. 

The heady and enigmatic questions posed above can incite a plethora of possible thought currents as the listener goes deep into the 26-minute piece.  Academics, scholars, and philosophers (either armchair or credentialed) will certainly find a way to derive answers that will fit into their favorite thought leaders’ principles but, good luck gaining consensus when you try and ping it back to the music on this recording.

So, you might as well just go in cold and… listen.  Listen with the ears of a swaddling infant when they can equate sounds with environment, a teenager inspired to pick up a guitar after his first encounter with Jeff Beck, or someone experiencing the moment where jazz finally “clicked”.  Draw your own conclusions, tell your own stories… Where Shockwaves Become Sound is the enabler extraordinaire.

Then… build your narrative.  Very cool to know Barrett’s intents and, maybe I’ll give it a go weaving those mysterious questions into the sound space but… maybe I won’t.  (Spoiler, I do… read on.) 

Once you decide to hear and examine this piece on a smaller, detailed level (as I am wont to do) you will find (as I did) a whole lot of raw material to fill your mental movie screen.   Who knows… maybe it will be revealed what exactly DOES happen on the other side of that supersonic boundary.  So that’s a lot of words to say that Where Shockwaves Become Sound is yet another stellar release from Natasha Barrett where you can just let the music happen. 

As an aside, I only recently became aware of the versatility of these pipe organs.  (See my write-up on Kali Malone’s live performance.) They are majestic things that in the right hands have the capability to deliver a tsunami of gut-rattling sound.  They don’t necessarily need to be accompanied/augmented by “electroacoustic sound” but… if you insist, I’ll just have to listen!

The piece itself is more organ and less electroacoustic (EA).  Ashiem’s dexterous playing is all over the musical map… from shy, almost playful short bursts of notes dancing around the sound field to terrifyingly large, sustained power chords.  From quiet upper register arpeggios to skull-shaking bass slabs.  This is a dynamically rich piece of music where no motif wears out its welcome.  The musical streams are constantly shifting which, by default presents the listener with a large swath of the material new worlds are made of.

Barrett’s input seems to be overlayed rather than embedded into the acoustic fabric.  To my ears, Where Shockwaves Become Sound is an organ piece that Barrett, in a light touch, subtle way gently nudges the listener to focus their thoughts on the album notes that opened this write-up.  There is a dystopian vibe to those notes, and Barrett, in a very low-key way seems to run with it.  There are times where I “think” the organ is being manipulated but I’m just not 100% sure about it.  Little sounds occasionally rise from the sonic ether in vivid detail and then go away.  Words are diced into sibilant syllables where you can feel the hiss of breath inside your head.  Veiled, unintelligible voices sounding like they are synched with Ashiem’s playing are trying to tell us something… something very important, but the complete message just doesn’t come through.  But fragments do, the word “virus” for instance. And that certainly leads us down the crooked path of… “disinformation spreads like a…”

And maybe that’s the point.  It only took that one word, “virus” to turn the interpretive tide as to how I was hearing this work.  Everything that I conjured previously to that word was thrown into the dustbin of wrongness. 

Music, at least EA music always seemed like a personal affair to me.  Turn on, tune in, drop out… right?  Is Barrett transmitting a warning, by using us as an example?  With her subliminal electronic machinations is she demonstrating how easy the cognitive human brain can be molded through disinformation and subsequently spread… kind of like a virus?  All it took was one word.  Screw your alien worlds, subterranean vistas, or Shire-like panoramas… we are talking about mind control here suckaz!  Are we the experiment?  Is the joke on us?  Ooops, I see what you did there NB.

Trust nothing (except me when I say don’t sleep on this excellent release)! 

Mike Eisenberg
Meisenberg1@hotmail.com
Twitter: @bigaudio999

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AMN Reviews

AMN Reviews: TRIONYS – Protuberanzen (2021; earsay); TRIONYS – vector alpha (2002; earsay)

At its most basic level, TRIONYS are 3 uber-talented musicians, improvising to their hearts’ content and, not only making one helluva lot of noise but by the sound of it enjoying each other’s interactions whilst doing it.  That’s important and really, all that matters!  But, before you think Protuberanzen is a 38-minute pissing match of which member makes the biggest noise (no pun there), I’ll try and explain why it’s a lot more than that.

TRIONYS is Rainer Bürck on keyboards and electronics, Günter Marx on violin and electronics, and Martin Bürck on gongs, percussion, and yep… electronics.  (Do you think electronics are key on this album?) 

Protuberanzen is one 38-minute piece when it’s presented in its entirety.  Additionally, on the download, the piece is split up into 4 sections…I suppose for the benefit of the time-pressed listener.  I will always default to the entire 38-minute piece in one shot which is the preferred way the group would like it to be heard.  That’s what this write-up is based on.    

I recently wrote about Rainer Bürck’s two very excellent acousmatic albums here and here.  In the context of TRIONYS, the sound heavily leans on his music technology skills.  One of the key elements is the formidable use of samples and (especially) live sound processing.  Rainer developed the necessary software that combines sampling, MIDI processing, and live sound manipulation and injected it all into the DNA of TRIONYS… basically allowing the players a huge, greenfield space of options in which they can individually and jointly express themselves.  Not only does each member display virtuosic chops on their chosen sounding body, but tastefully and sympathetically layer this added technology boost to their soundscape.  If someone insisted on knowing who they sound like, gun to my head I would say The Necks (with a giant caveat which I’ll explain below).  This answer would be predicated on TRIONYS’ sound BEFORE all the electronics and real time manipulation comes into play.  The addition of electronics changes the playing field, giving the trio a very different set of options to mold their sound.

And that they do.  Trionys is not a slave to technology.  Au contraire, all this high-tech layering serves a purpose, and it’s used to spread truth, beauty, goodness, and good cheer in the most mind-altering way possible. 

So that brings me to my first reason why I dig their sound.  My recent write-up on Åke Parmerud emphasized the point that electro-acoustic music should bring in elements of polyphonic composing.  The music on Protuberanzen checks that box.  The Necks comparison above came to mind because of the deft ensemble work within this trio.  The music is birthed by group improvisation and it’s very apparent that they are all listening to each other, playing off each other and using ideas set forth by one member as a springboard to move the sound into an entirely different direction.

This interplay makes for wonderful textures while also providing great opportunities for the close listener to appreciate each member’s contribution to the greater good.  I particularly enjoy the moments when the trio untethers themselves from some of the moodier atmospherics and begin to all out blow.  Here I’m reminded of the British free jazz unit Ovary Lodge, especially in the way Rainer Bürck channels Keith Tippet’s piano stylings.  But, unlike OL, The Necks, or other improvisational groups, the best bits of these improvs are cherry-picked and then re-animated into a coherent form after the fact, thus my caveat.

TRIONYS also does something that I don’t run into very often (which brings me to my second reason).  Whether you want to call them a free-jazz improvising ensemble (with benefits) or, for that matter a rock-based trio creating instant compositions (also, with benefits) … their usage of electronics and live processing adds a very awesome acousmatic element to the space.  While I would love to hear TRIONYS au naturale without the electronics… and I have no doubt it would be a completely different and superb listening experience (these gentlemen can play!!!), that’s just not who they are.  The acousmatic content which is part of the group’s fabric transports the Protuberanzen experience into a netherworld of chaos, unease, and negative space.  The chaos of an ultra-modern, advanced city during rush hour, the unease of a black and grey cobblestoned back alley ’round about midnight after a rainstorm, the negative space of a formless void folding into itself, into a non-being.  Yeah, those are the sensations I want to experience when I check into the headphone space and Protuberanzen delivers!  What are yours?

Their first album, vector alpha was released about 20 years before Protuberanzen.  While the overall sound is somewhat the same, the ensemble feel is tempered by solo spotlights.

vector alpha leaves more room for Bürck, Marx, and Bürck to highlight their individual talents on their respective axe.  The group synergy still abounds but each member is given their own space.  I think in lesser hands, this would not have been a selling point for me but on vector alpha it works.  Both Rainer Bürck’s (piano) and Günter Marx’s (violin) solos seem to just materialize seamlessly into the overall feel and atmosphere of the entire album and they both play with the passion/restraint that is needed.  If I wasn’t looking at track titles, I would think that these spots were part of one extended piece, they fit perfectly.  In fact, as I type this… even though vector alpha is indexed into several tracks, they all have that airbrushed feel that links everything together.  It may as well be a 67-minute piece like (the shorter) Protuberanzen.

It’s Martin Bürck’s percussion solo that really stands out though!  It’s the longest “solo segment” and I think for good reason.  His “electrified” percussion rig expands the soundscape creating a BIG sound.  Acousmatically speaking, the uncanny and unusual abounds over the course of his 13-minute spotlight.  There even seems to be thematic development happening with his ebbing and flowing dynamics.  What I assume are gongs are transformed into super-sized taiko drums reverberating throughout the cosmos.  Smaller percussives sound out with a crispness that is deconstructed into grains that fade as they pan across the sound screen.  Bits of metal and junk get thrown around adding to the entropic mess of sound… a mess that is as much beautiful as it’s chaotic.

I wish I had the opportunity to see TRIONYS perform live.  Yes, the large acousmatic element enables the wyrd sound and textures, a virtue that is compelling enough for me to love both albums… but gesturally I bet they would be a thing to behold!  Taking Martin Bürck’s percussion playing in isolation would be a performance I wouldn’t want to miss but really, I suspect all three of them would be an intense and physical live show.

Until that happens, we have both Protuberanzen and vector alpha to enjoy.  Even though the albums are 20 years apart, they share a similar sound, a sound that is unique enough for me to say that its possibilities are not fully mapped out and explored yet.  I can only hope that the intrepid voyage of discovery that TRIONYS is on will continue.  Their particular new world is ripe for further exploration.  Both come with my highest recommendation.

Late addendum:  TRIONYS did indeed do an unplugged set back in 2006.  Here are 4 short videos: https://www.youtube.com/@trionys880

Mike Eisenberg
Meisenberg1@hotmail.com
Twitter: @bigaudio999