There's a pervading darkness to Salvagesound's release "12 Reductions (2005)", a feeling of somthing haunted and mysterious, enigmas and riddles and secrets all wrapped up around eachother in a knot that can't be undone without losing yourself in it's intricacies. Using processed field recordings and found sounds, Matthew Poulakakis of Salvagesound has created a wonderful collection of tracks that sets fire to the imagination.
"corq" opens the disc with a series of scraping and abstract sounds suggesting percussive elements but too random and alien to be heard as drums. It's a suspenseful piece, a very dramatic work that creeps along slowly but effectively towards it's resolution. "tuebe" follows, a track that brings to mind the sound of the void as portrayed by a drifting drone. It's nice work, quite engaging in it's minimalism as form and shape become apparent throughout. Track three, "Alvalva", continues along similar lines, building on a theme and then diverging into new territory. Irregular chirps give this track an organic sense, a feeling of life caught in the middle of an industrial wasteland. "terranoid" introduces metallic ringing to the mix, playing randomly overtop an oscillating drone. A small melody can be heard just on the edge of the track, something to anchor the listener's senses but too faint to identify beyond it's presence. "ixuni" comes in at track number five, an oscillating drone rising and falling overtop a pulsing tone remeniscent of an engine. There's a feeling of movement here, a really nice use of oblique motion that suggests travel and distance crossed. A very effective track.
Track six, "squeue", adds more melodic elements to the mix, a processed piano playing mournful melodies alongside the sounds of metal bowing. It's a subtle shift in the tone of the disc, but a significant one in terms of the way that the listener hears the remaining tracks. "elloidal" follows, a dark and bleak aural landscape to be sure but one filled with a tragic beauty and mournfulness that strikes a chord inside. Tones rise and fall through the mix, the sound of water and waves providing a backdrop over which everything plays. Very powerful. "hovertour" incorporates a repeated phrase overtop a fragmented sample, daring the listener to identify with the sounds played just below the surface. "opheliate" continues the water imagery established in earlier tracks and expands upon it with the feeling of tides and drift. It's a vivid imagery, a very clear feeling of the sea that both inspires and frightens. Very impressive. Track nine, "decrestlers", utilizes a deep wind tunnel drone to great effect, suggesting a dark and ominous environment where nothing grows, nothing lives, yet still possessed of a certain haunted beauty. "bosphosphorus" comes next, ominous metallic scraping and faint phrases raising the hair on the back of your neck. "feleket" closes the disc, a steady moan and drone piece occasionally interspersed with other sounds.
"12 Reductions (2005)" is stunning work, all of the tracks creating an environment and pace unique to themselves. Definately one of the best examples of sonic architecture that I've heard in a long time.
rik - ping things