Ale Hop: The Life of Insects (Buh Records, 2020)

October 26, 2020 at 10:53 pm | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Ale Hop: The Life of Insects

The newest album from Ale Hop was inspired by the Peruvian experimental artist’s month spent living with different insects in her home studio in Berlin (incidentally I mistakenly wrote the label as Bug Records, when it’s actually Buh). She actually bought them from an insect dealer and built terrariums for them, and recorded them to use for sound design in a film. This album isn’t a collage of insect sounds, but there’s moments that might make you think it is. Instead, it’s a stunning and curious album of pieces which attempt to form aural depictions of the insects. Not that this one song is called “Grasshopper” and it sounds like a grasshopper, and this other one is like crickets humming, etc. It’s a lot more open to interpretation with the titles. But there’s definitely some buzzing drones, some sickly insectoid chirps, some high-pitched whirs and flutters. And also some fractured pop melodies here and there, and NWW-style sound design sorcery. It’s actually more accessible than you might think, at least if you’re into dark abstract industrial. So maybe it’s not really that accessible. It is pretty fascinating though.

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