DECAYCAST Reviews: qualchan “Goodbye To All That” (Houdini Mansions, 2019)

Back from a little break to review the newest release from Houdini Mansions, from Cascadian producer qualchan, titled “Goodbye To All That”, and it’s a rather fitting title as the short, bending, warbling loops come into our lives like short lived, lush experiences that vanish into the haze as quickly as they appeared on the horizon. on “Goodbye To All That” qualchan focuses on subtle shifts within these micro compositions that span ambient, post rock, muzak/library music and more. Some of them operate as escaped breaths from larger compositions, perhaps to be expanded upon, while others are self contained and don’t seek anything outside of themselves. Warm, trippy, fuzzed out loops for a moist walk through an all but abandoned forest. Beautiful release.

DECAYCAST Reviews: Reverent – “Live Exorcism 2017” (American Damage, 2017)

DECAYCAST Reviews: Reverent – “Live Exorcism 2017” (American Damage, 2017)

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Reverent is the  Chicago based project of  Jordan Reyes and, for the  duration at  least of this release,  focuses on strictly voice- based industrial / loop based  rhythmic works.  The sound of Reverent oscillates between traditional primitively rhythmic based  industrial, drone, and ritual music / chanting and experimental noise. This specific release is titled “Live Exorcism 2017”, and functions both sonically and conceptually very much in that realm. In one section the listener is being led on a more pronounced almost spoken word / beat section of the performance and then things begin to shift to a slower, more abstracted version of a similar piece. Reverent never stays in one lane too often throughout the piece, always  keeping the  dynamics and composition shifting in an interesting and unique way. Technically speaking, a rather full vocal range gives the artist the ability to construct full sounding works from just the voice, I’ve heard other vocal based acts which can come off as gimmicky or contrived in a way but Reverent is absolutely not that at all. Every bar, ever loop, every breath seems intentional and  carefully places, there’s never really a slip  up, we as the listener are presented with a polished, dense, articulate set of vocal explorations, which are no short of  songs unto themselves, but also they exist a much more; an exorcism, a nervous, manic cleansing of the performer.

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Reverent is truly a unique project, sound and concept wise, as I cannot really compare it to anything else. Stylistically, it could exist in similar realms of drone / percussion pioneer Z’EV, NURSE  WITH WOUND, COIL, but could also operate in a  more contemporary  undiscovered space/zone as well,  blending dense layers of  vocal processing to an almost fever-dream style of symphonic production. The sound of Reverent is nervous, trance-like and for  lack of a better tern, darkly triumphant. Reyes really does craft all of the parts of a traditional “song” with just the human voice, bass lines, poly-rhyhms, leads, and more  traditional vocal layers; an entire band is born from the esophagus;  come alive. Even if you are dead,  you will be reanimated by the  ritualistic chanting drones and  oscillations of Reverent.

 

Reverent is about to  embark on a short  tour and here is the information below. Make sure to catch one of these live rituals if possible; if so much  can be gained from just a live mic  recording of these works, imagine what they must present like in the flesh and in the ear; NOT TO BE MISSED.

 

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DecaycastREVIEWS: COLLAPSED ARC “Tension And Tenure” (ASR, 2013)

20130423-134745.jpgCollapsed Arc is another one of the many projects of Cleveland multitalent David Russell Snake. This tour only tape exemplifies the artists highly crafted noise loops, made from
Hand persuasion, feedback, white noise plasma and undulating modulations fuzz. At times sounding like industrialized hip hop instrumentals (especially the first minute which jumps out of the gate with a sinister distorted head nod) and then going into subtly modulated feedback loops of noise and microphone / piezo feedback- high frequency inner ear trauma for the stunted listener. Beautiful walls of distorted mini wind instruments rip a skin mask from your worried face and wrap it around and around until it squeezes new frequency out of dense breath. Often mechanical
Sounding and often organic- Thw noise loops on this cassette are constantly shifting in their origin and purpose but never stray conceptually or sonically away from an acutely precise presentation and structure. The peaking high frequency squeaking chaos crescendos do an almost fever pitch and then a beat drops in- even if just a bass hit – and the entire orientation is restructured. these have a raw but rehearsed feel, NOT overworked, yet at the same time, not half assed by any stretch, the pitch, duration, timbre, sequencing and overall structure all ebb and flow with an apparent natural effortlessness.

The second half of the A side brings in more minimal
Breakdowns that escalate into controlled noise/beat/loop chaotic conundrums.

The second side offers more of the same fine crafted dense persuasive percussive tight loops- blending drum sounds, percussive elements and sharply carved noise and feedback blasts, ebbing and swelling yet always maintaining a dynamic intensity and consciousness.
The sound sources are seemingly unknown- I thought I hear voices? But it might be not so – modulated reeds, winds, oscillators, crunched hand percussion and oscillators modulate through organized sonic storms of chopped rhythms- Collapsed Arc work has always been loop based, but these take the project to a new level, skillfully and carefully composed and executed warbling tones of hell-
Beautiful artwork as always from
The A Sound Design Recordings inprint. COLLAPSED ARC makes a RARE bay area appearance this Thursday, April 25th @ Life Changing ministries in oakland, CA . this is also the release party for the cassette and can only be obtained at the show – so DON’T MISS OUT.

RATSKIN EXPLASTICAL #32
COLLAPSED ARC (Hanson / ASR / Ratskin )

/DILATEDEARS (Ratskin /Placenta)

“RUST WORSHIP (Obsolete Units)

HAHA LA (sound/performance art)

Coagulator & Head-boggle DJ

8:30 pm $5
Life Changing ministries
8th st @ Peralta
Lower bottoms, west Oakland

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