Uton/The Gonk with a Luminous Nose/Roped Off/Sheaf & Froggatt: split tape (Shack in the Barley Productions, 2016)

April 8, 2017 at 8:58 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Uton/The Gonk with a Luminous Nose/Roped Off/Sheaf & Froggatt: split tape

Yet another tape from a while ago that I’m just catching up on. This one starts off with a 20-minute suite from Digitalis alumni Uton. It evokes a lot of the same haunted forest qualities as many of the other Finnish experimental underground artists. It feels like it’s being played by animals under the light of neon stars, then it takes the form of psychoactive bubbles in a luminous pool, then it’s a shortwave radio transmission. The Gonk with a Luminous Nose (more commonly known as The Golden Gonk) follows suit with overdriven hypnotic fuzz. Less prone to shapeshifting or changing form than Uton, he’s more likely to venture hard down one direction, until the location itself morphs into something else. On the tape’s second side, Hausu Mountaineers Roped Off start with throbbing minimalist synths, but then their second track is a noisier and more expansive (but still hypnotic and minimalist in some way) journey through an asteroid belt. Sheaf & Froggatt are the most mysterious act on this tape, and their contributions are titled “Noises Made by Cacti Growing Inside an Alien Hothouse” and “A Ram Sang Under Water”. Those only sound like part of what’s going on, though, but it’s really hard to describe what else is happening. The pieces are much more collage-y and dream-like than the rest of the tape, filled with distant voices and telekinesis and transparency and sudden, alarming shifts. The whole tape is a really good mix of brain-marinating confusion.

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