This recording works in roughly the same "slow drone" territory explored by Vnuk and Oophoi on their
solo Hypnos releases, Silence Speaks in Shadows and Athlit, respectively. At the
same time, it has a different sonic character, at times slow and dark and smooth, but at other moments
bright and modern and metallic. Distance to Zero could fairly be described as some of the
most daring and experimental work by either artist... a true surprise to these ears when the demo
arrived here at Hypnos HQ. It definitely has an "edge" to it, though it's still definitely
easy and smooth listening. I have no doubt this will be a much-loved and much-discussed Hypnos
release, and a significant milestone in the discography of both Vnuk and Oophoi.
Vnuk's Silence Speaks in Shadows and Oophoi's
Athlit are two of the best-loved releases on Hypnos,
and now these two great artists have combined their
creative and sound-sculpting powers for a new work!
Track list with MP3 samples:
"...a recording that might well be described as more exploratory work by established artists is Distance to Zero, a
collab between old hands Paul Vnuk Jr. + Oöphoi that crept out late in ‘06. And crept is an apt word, for this is a
surprisingly creepy set. They operate in similar slow drone territory to their last solo Hypnos releases, Silence Speaks in
Shadows and Athlit, respectively. Yet their communion results in a work with a quite esoteric sonic character. More
arcane and less harmonically resolved than anything Vnuk has done, and near the netherworld lights at the end of
Oöphoi’s world, it definitely has a spooky eldritch undertow to it, especially on the unsettling opener, “Distance to
Zero I.” “Distance to Zero II” contains recognizable elements of their individual work, notably Gasparetti’s palaeontology
with Tau Ceti on Subterranea, evidenced in some trademark suspended bowl-sounds and steepling toneclouds,
atavistic rumblings and abyss-hinting upsurges. This is well augmented by Vnuk’s orchestrations of the peripheral
familiar from Silence Speaks, dwelling at the threshhold of static sub-vocal drone-float while channelling some eerie
chthonics. The sound architecture is certainly denser and chewier than most of Oöphoi’s recent discs, and more
timbrally varied, with Vnuk’s influence also apparent in the static grain that occasionally creeps in at the outer limits.
Smooth but smudged, with hints of a processed distillate of metal machine music, Distance to Zero evolves weightily
but actively, offering a sustaining richness of texture. Do not think of filing anywhere near “new age,” or even
“ethereal.” Maybe under “atmospheric electronic” with a touch of “earthen” edge."
--Reviewed by Alan Lockett for ei-mag.com