Thomas P. Heckmann: Ghosts (Carpe Sonum Novum, 2015)March 15, 2016 at 9:02 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment
Thomas P. Heckmann is the type of long-running, overwhelmingly prolific musician whose catalog I’ve almost entirely ignored, aside from a few compilation tracks and a GTO remix. This album just crossed my path, and just after listening to the first few tracks, it already sounded completely unbelievable. It seems like a cliche to refer to an album called Ghosts as haunting, especially with its shadowy artwork, but there really isn’t anything else this album could’ve been fittingly titled. Heckmann explains in the liner notes that while recording this album, he began to hear voices that weren’t there (or possibly were), and it’s not hard to hear what he’s talking about. This is legitimately chilling music, and it sounds better and more haunting the louder you turn it up. Dark drone music that makes extensive use of bass is always a good thing. “Scream” adds crushing Tim Hecker-y distortion (yes, their names are a bit similar, but Heckmann was around first) and it just slays. There’s just so much going on in these tracks, there really are a tone of barely perceptible sounds that sort of emerge through the fog and sometimes take over, turning into beats or beginning to sound like voices. An incredibly inventive, ever-shifting, honest-to-Satan frightening (at times) album.