DECAYCAST Reviews: Philipp Bückle “Paintings” (Moving Furniture Records, 2018)

DECAYCAST Reviews: Philipp Bückle “Paintings” (Moving Furniture Records, 2018)


“Paintings” is the newest work  from Germany’s  ambient/drone maestro Philipp Bückle via Moving Furniture Records on LP, CD, & Digital.  “Paintings”  offers forty plus minutes of minimalistic, thoughtful, introspective drone compositions spread  over  twelve tracks. The album’s intro, titled “Elegant Company In Front Of A Palace” opens with a  soft,  pillowed muffled wash of static and barely audible clicks of voice and potential movement. Slowly, carefully and intentionally the  album’s intro  crescendo’s in volume and intention with lush, sine waves, akin to the decay of a  distant call for  help, or love, or  compassion, or  companionship,  The  track  builds and  swells and  before you know it we are left  with an ancient, beeping, buzzing, nothing.  This theme of  a lost communication, reaching out across a barren empty landscape continue throughout the record, which apparently is the  third in a trilogy of  similar works recorded in the  artists vacationing spot  of Copenhagen, Denmark.


Some tracks offer more musical stringed resolve, where as other  occupy a noisier more abstract space, but the  tension holds  well  across the  album as a whole, although the noisier passages  seem to build the tension which is  often released and resolved through the more  string based, musical compositions. This isn’t  100% experimental, but it’s  also somewhat indescribable as it  does oscillate seemingly well  intentioned between what some would call noise, ambient, and drone  while still offering the listener points of  resolve with  fairly standard musical  compositions so to speak. The more ambient tracks  stand out as the  album’s stronger and more interesting experiments though Bückle manages to carry forth  his themes of loss, isolation, and occasionally comfort and  discovery in a continuous and intentional way, which acts as a glue for the  varied structures and  styles of  compositions presented on, the  aptly titled, “Paintings”, as many of the  songs feel like vignettes, posters, experience in of themselves each wearing a slightly augmented form of  sorrow on it’s sleeve.

Of the more traditionally musical tracks, a quaint cinematic effect is achieved, especially on the vocal forward tracks such as Figures On A Road Through The Woods”  and  A Seascape. The Coast Of The Island In Evening Light” which both boast a rather lush, decaying, middle  range voice  drone which blends carefully and intentionally with the slowly evolving, churning string and piano drones which lay delicately and  subtly underneath the more  forward, punctual voice based sections.  These are breaths in the cold air of loss, gain, confusion, and clarity, These are paintings, nothing more and nothing less. Take from that what you may. Overall a strong release from a longstanding, musically diverse, and persistent imprint, who you  will be hearing more about in the future.


DECAYCAST Reviews: Katatonic Silentio / Tremco / Neurosplit / Oromë (Biodiversità Records, 2018)

DECAYCAST Reviews: Katatonic Silentio / Tremco / Neurosplit / Oromë (Biodiversità Records, 2018)


This collaboration shifts  honestly between many many different  sonic spaces; in the least contrived blending of  beat oriented synthesis and, well plants.  Riffing off a  theme of the releasing label, Biodiversità Records, Katatonic Silentio / Tremco / Neurosplit / Oromë create a dense, special world of  sonic possibilities in a structurally rhythmic call and response ping pong of tense, delicate, and complicated sonic events.  Oscillating between dissonant beat oriented electronic music which the  artists admit could be  considered “techno” but the  four to the floor mindless speed comedown hooks are  left  by the wayside for a more atonal, arrhythmic, deconstruction of traditional “techno”, “dubstep” or whatever step” you take away from these quaint but pungent sonic exercises.  “Pteris Variata” unduates  between slower, cold, tense pulsing rhythms, occasionally backed by more straightforward  percussive  voices, however the  ambient  swells and  tense array of  noises never  allows this to become too much of  a  unique sound; the tracks and  sections move  swiftly and  articulate their space and move on, nothing forces the listener into a corner relentlessly, rather  creates a dark and interesting space for the listener to crawl into if they choose and explore a lush, dark, cinematic sound.

Background  swells of anciently articulated sawtooth waves  swell and wobble under a filter noose and offer an ambience which the percussion rhythms can dance around without dominating the mix.  Overall the  vibe is minimalist, tense, cinematic, ambient. Clickity, tapping, bass drums drive the  rhythm exercises through a  full workout of  sonic possibilities ending with perhaps the  EP’s strongest track, ” Oromë – Athyrium cantem” which speaks to  early Phaedra era Tangerine Dream, Wendy Carlos and  even references current producers such as Cloudland Canyon or Peaking Lights.

Will be  digging more through this  Italian based label’s catalog and seeing what other dark, pulsing treats we can find hiding in the brush.


BEAST NEST “Pluto” Video Premiere :

(video directed by : malocculsion)

The efforts of  Bay Area  artist, musician, healer, promoter and educator  Sharmi Basu are seemingly endless and  so far reaching  that  before  one has the opportunity  to grasp  and contextualize  one action in the  greater realm of experimental music, they are onto the next.

0004 Lumen Frame
production still from “Pluto” video

Between constantly touring, and  releasing last years  “Taste Of India” cassette (Ratskin), a new  Tour  EP  for  her  recently completed  European tour,  running  The Mara Performance Collective,  which self describes as “a performance and improvisation group that is centered on shared politics and identity.  The MPC is focused on radical people of color, that is non-white folks, and is emphasizing those who identify as queer, trans, and/or womyn of color.”, and it’s offshoot, Brown Noise  , have become staples for many new  and  experienced artists to gain and refine their “chops” so to speak outside of the  white male patriarchy which has historically taken up so much space in noise and  underground communities.  Most recently, Basu was  a  part of The Universe Is Lit:  the bay area’s  first ever Black and  Brown Punk Festival with  fellow curators Shawna Shawnte, Jade Ariana and Titania Kumeh, and recently opening for electronic music’s den mother Suzanne Ciani at the  San Francisco Electronic Music Festival,  Through all of this, Basu has both ears, a dog and a mic to the ground in the  forefront of  experimental music, politics, and community building.  She  even contributed a track to the recently released  “Rogue Pulse /  Gravity Collapse” compilation (Ratskin)  which spawns twelve hours of music in direct support of  Black Lives Matter,  St James Infirmary, and The Oakland  Immediate Relief Fund, which  consisted of  Basu and  several other femme organizers who took  and  distributed donations after last year’s Ghostship tragedy which claimed the lives of thirty six souls of the  Oakland and  bay area

BEAST NEST . Photo:  Gabby Gamboa.

creative community, many of whom were  close to Basu.   Despite all of this  loss, chaos, and  uncertainty with these  violent, chaotic, shaking and bleeding times,  Basu marches forward  and  continues to help  pave the way for the  decolonization of  experimental, underground, music and  art. A  necessary, radical  action, like many aspects of confronting white supremacy,  which is long overdue.

Today, Basu releases a video for  “Pluto”  which is  from the B side of the “Taste of  India”  cassette, released in an edition of  100  cassettes on Ratskin in fall of last year, which can be viewed above.  The video blends analog and  video  synthesis, feedback, found  footage and  digital  video processing. Make sure to  click the  HD option in the  youtube window for  maximum definition, as the  video is  visually dense. Please make sure to    Follow her Bandcamp,  or   Soundcloud  orrrrrrr  main website for more information and  current shows. She also has a Patreon which has some amazing  incentives!



DECAYCAST REVIEWS: HEY EXIT “Else” Cassette/Digital (2015)

“Else”  was  recorded by HEY  EXIT, in Brooklyn NY in 2015, but  you’d  never  really be able to tell as  it comes off  as this  sort of  timeless  drone recording.  “Else”  starts with a low, slow, cloudy  drone and  slowly builds and  destroys  subtlety across the  entire album. The  first sounds that  emerge  are  delicate.  spacious, tone  poems of  humming synths? guitars? who knows?  but the  source a1533371763_16isn’t  really that important and the sounds  create a sonic  space  that exists  somewhat outside of  codified instrumentation, structure,  rhythm. The  sonic palette of HEY EXIT is  largely of a similar toolset, at least on Else, and the cassette is broken up into five tracks, however they all function as  one  breadth, decaying and  gently bleeding into each other. “What Role, If  Any”  is  probably the track that feels   most complete on its  own in terms of a moving composition within itself and  offers arguably the most  sonic  density and  variety on this EP.

The sounds themselves  are a  plush mesh of drones,  blissed  out  and  stretched  out  orchestral swells, slow attack  guitar  swells,  strategically placed crunches of  rumbling  distortion, and  wind. The  tempo of  Else is  made up of slow, delicately offered  pulses, as  if  someone was  breathing  out the notes, blowing ou

t the  tempo on a single  flickering candle,  but  not  through a wind  instrument, the  attack is gone, the breath has  transformed into a slow,  churning, crawling, beautiful sound.  The slow, crawling , glossy pillars of  sounds ,  at times  almost seemed to  sync up with my breath as i was  sitting in the dark listen


ing to the  cassette on repeat. This is  excellent  “meditation” music, or at least music that  begs of  slow action, slow  thought,  slow body movements, and slow listening. There  are moments  that  get “noisy” in the traditional sense, but they never  obliterate or  destroy the  more  quiet, subtle  tones  that dance and  breathe  as he main life  source of the  piece.  “Else”  is  a delicately crafted ambient  drone offering for  fans of  slow, delicate, breathing music to  listen to  on a foggy, crawling  confusing day. Highly enjoyable.


You can   check this release and more  from HEY  EXIT,  here





“Four twenny in the Haight Ashbury? Yup. If smoke makes the best sunsets, the banks of Golden Gate Park will be blowin’ up as Neha Spellfish, Malocculsion, play the final show with Demonsleeper and Thoabath before they hang ten off a dank ring blowing out toward San Juan, Puerto Rico where they’ll opena new venue for experimental live sound. Come see them off with…1414959_10153953359597836_4368103547300810001_o

NEHA SPELLFISH (Oakland/Madrid)
With low frequency waves washing up on a beach of dark noise ambience, Spellfish delves into the shared space of interspecies communication and paramnesia, invoking the spectral measure of waking consciousness and noospheric cognition. Neha invokes themes of macro psychology, xeno feminism, dynamically modeled weather enclosures, and instinctual variance, employing audio programming platforms and algorithmic granular synthesis.

Deathrattle lullabys and inescapable lucid dreamscapes wrought by somnambulist maestra, Alexandra Bushman. In 1999, she formed the electro-acoustic group, Synethesia, tegether with Angélica Negrón. After scaring the daylights out of everyone at the Conservatory of Music in Puerto Rico, she matriculated to Mills College before committing to advanced studies with ancient dark forces whose names must never be spoken.

There’s a perceptible gravity to Andy Way that somehow vanishes once you draw near, the material world floats adrift. His solo project, Thoabath, might just be that massless Euclidean point where noise, dub, power electronics, horror, and ambient all emanate, an entelechy without clear precedent, of no laws. Prepare your ear, first study his collaborations with luminaries like Bruce Anderson (MX-80) & Petit Mal in the project, French Radio, sink yourself in the occult cacophony of Sutekh Hexen, and then, approach Thoabath, inescapable dark quasar.

Watch concrete turn to quicksand and glass return to sand as this sonic juggernaut storms the Haight Ashbury. His inaugural solo album released last year, “Psychosis Industrial Complex”, melds blown out distorted beats, arpeggiated synths, tape manipulation, voice, field recordings and homemade oscillators to belt forth a dark, unique offering of post industrial, prison music.




Most of the stuff on Denton, TX Out of Body Records we do happen to like quite alright, and this tape is no exception. Nite Shadz crafts a low reflective rumbling of dissonant – at times rock ish . At times noise , and at times WTF industrial music. Put on your specs ON and listen to the discarding dictation of the human – cyborg interaction. N S is like a John Carpenter film on acid through a growling Pitch shifter- distorted lines of a non linear plain – all whilst being flushed down the proverbial toilet of noise- in reverse. crawling, swelling ominous yells, thizzing and pummeling broken guitars ? Synths ? And pummeling smashing sparse drums ? A kit ? A machine ? Not quite sure what they are using but it’s all used well – the instrumentation seems pretty simplistic and bare bones – which makes this unique style of rock/industrial / drone function in an interesting
Manner – ALL SOUNDS ATE IMPORTANT. one never quite gets the sense of where the sound is going next but it goes SOMEWHERE , dark , brooding and fuzzing out the whole time .

NITE SHADZ IS. A broken eighteen wheeler, grinding its motors down to the final smashing gears, before sonic shrapnel is sent thrusting into the earths ears, splitting them open and lacerating a ne cochlear for the sounds of N S. to blaze forth in a purple hell . Can’t tell if it’s two people or six which I guess is a good thing as the sounds seem gelled together quite nice.

The cover art is just straight up odd and spectacular at the Same time. Full color high quality art with a minimal transparency depicting what appears to be the ghost of the dark shade. A all around beautiful Atape of an interesting style of hybridized style of fuzz,, noise , industrial VHS drum hiss , smashed guitars, and synths stuck in hell – Nite Shadz concocts the pefect road soda of heavy and “chill hell” music — even even even and at times dare I say dare i say dare i say — slugged out rock (NOT in a bad way ) This tape was sent for review to us , but if they release anything else I’ll be sending some ducket$ their way for sure – top notch stuff by a great label.

decayREVIEWS: REVIVER “Total Load Shed” CS (Temple of Pei, 2008)

REVIVER “Total Load Shed” CS (Temple of Pei, 2008)

Despite being from CT, while I was there I was never able to stumble upon the clandestine yet articulate New England noise project, REVIVER, aka Chris Donofrio. OK we pop the tape in; WOAH, have to say this is some of the more interesting and well articulated “drone” ish? releases I have heard in a while, although to just call it drone would oversimplify a style which goes, at times, beyond the structure and pacing of what we think of as “drone”. The tape starts with a low rumble of buzzing broken boat engines sputtering in the dark, creeping with a pulsing drive, REVIVER takes the listener on a tour of desolate landscapes, barren buldings, and crumbling consciousness. The simplicity of this release makes it approachable to fans of music outside of the traditional noise “genre” yet dynamic and textured enough to hold the interest of those who can no longer take the quick melodic shifts and westernized structures that pop pushes-THE “NOISEHEADS”. The changes in tone and pulse are slow but they are PRESENT. This is not just wall drone, where the sound may be unchanging (or perceptively so) for 20 minutes, rather it’s modulations shift just when your wondering if your tape player is caught in a loop (NOT possible) This could easily be taken out of the realm of “noise”or “drone” music and be placed as a soundtrack to a yet to be made film, or a live score. Don’t have any real evidence to support this, but it breathes a pacing that would map well onto an abstract film architecture; it’s well balanced. This cinematic edge lies in REVIVER’s progressions and spacial awareness. Not to me, but I could see how some might dismiss this release as “synth noddling” or “droning” but WAIT, this is made using ONLY GRAPHIC EQ’s ?!?!?! In some sort of feedback loop or something? regardless, in my opinion it just makes this release that much more interesting.WHAT? Couldn’t be, so I wrote the artist and he confirmed that he proudly uses ONLY graphic EQ’sas the sound source. So simple, yet so elegant, and yet still conceptually interesting. Not totally integral to listening experience, but listening to it again, after knowing the sound source, gave it a new breath of complexity. The A side starts out solid and ends solid, with three or four different movements in between, all varying tones and explorations with similar pacing.

The B side picks up right where the A side left off with low crawling squarewave pulses, a grey modulating din of tonal patches stitched together with decrying buzzing, humming, hammering, and hills and hills of psychotropic pillars of color and timbre. Sometimes sinister, and sometimes soothing, Reviver accomplishes much with little in terms of controls, though it’s quite clear he has some control of the machines that he’s working with, grabbing distant radio blips of distorted transmissions.

The A side overall is a bit more solid, spaces on the B side tend to be a little underdeveloped compared to the former, but it’s quite cohesive overall, and the recording quality is good/consistant throughout, so it seems it was all done with a similar process? Nice full color artwork in one of those semi transparent plastic “jewel cases” for cassettes, which for some reason, I CANNOT FUCKING STAND, I feel it would look alot slicker in a regular norelco box, but then again i think 99/100 cassettes that come packaged in those would look better, so it’s just my own shitty bias. but that would basically be my main criticism, which is null at best, so a great release overall.

Overall : 8.1/13
Written By: malo 3/5/12