Album Review

EKG – “electricals” – [Another Timbre]

abacus   9/5/2012   A Library, CD

4th full length from this electroacoustic duo focused on the study of electrical current made audible through the use of analog electronics as a medium to portray the human element, present here in the form of double reeds and brass. A lot of low end hums, buzzes and clicks narrated by the omnipresent tone drones of horns. In the first track foghorns echo in the empty mist of a dense cloud, draped white over our vision. A gust of freezing wet wind pummels briefly, then leaves an icy veil lingering. We move to a firefly laden knoll, running through the darkness, brush rustling and awakening restless creatures. A brief encounter with an unknown luminescence sends us fleeing, only to collapse fatigued as we’re sung to sleep by a sad, soothing serenade. On 3 a solitary strand of kelp sways in the fluxing tides of murky, polluted waters. They stand almost stationary from the obstruction of industrial docks until a fleet of passing ships sends the waters into turmoil. On the fourth we watch the physical deconstruction of a fragmented tone, split and spontaneously disintegrated into a morphing cloud of dust inside a thermodynamic vacuum. The album closes with an orchestra tuning to the key of bent and torn metal, warping and cracking under the heat of high voltage. These guys create a space that can be simultaneously empty and immersive, thick like a humid fog yet vacuous like a dark room, with the constant surge of electricity emanating throughout.

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