Album Review

Millipede – “Powerless” – [Hymen]

Thurston Hunger   6/1/2011   A Library, CD

Don Hill is Millipede, and as the insect itself, he never dances too
rapidly, but does have an odd complicated set of steps to get into
motion. So this is IdM (light on the “D”), but the “I” could double
for introspective. The lead-off track is a bit of a misleading one,
easily the warmest, in samples and melody. Very early 90’s kind of
radio-active glow. That is a collaboration with Caul; indeed every cut
here is a collaboration with various folks. On “Synovial Damage” some
shreads of Seefeely squelch slip in, but lots of atmospheric synth
smoke too. More drifty electronic winds follow with a steady breeze
of distortion, and piano to introduce what almost feels like a theme
that then turns up twisted, but reminiscent on the title track.
The album and track titles connect evidently to a personal tour de
pain for Hill, and while I don’t know the details, the pain is what
gives the middle tracks that mutated power, while the last track
strives for a resolution, glissando notes of three chime into
solidarity chords, even some Transporter slides. #3 has servo
out of control beats, #4 is the most dramatic with taught percussion
pulls and a great bleak ending.

-Thurston Hunger

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