Meadow Argus: This Old Rotten Barge tape (Tynan Tapes Temporal, 2023)

February 5, 2023 at 11:54 am | Posted in Reviews | Leave a comment

Meadow Argus: This Old Rotten Barge tape

The newest Meadow Argus tape is the project’s most evocative recording yet, making the listener feel like a stowaway on a haunted ship on the path to total disappearance from civilization. The album extensively incorporates field recordings run through a delay pedal, with the first stretch of the first side taken from the banks of the Ohio river under a bridge, while a spooky backwards voice bleeds through from the other side of the master tape. Then there’s “It’ll heal over”, taken from a hospital hallway while being wheeled in for surgery. The echoed voices, unsteady tape quality, and wavering melodic loop all present feelings of displacement, not being able to believe any of this is happening, not being fully there. “Just like the skim that shines across the humps and the swells of the tide waters”, which takes up all of side B, is a bit calmer, with samples taken from an aquarium lapping up against the patient organ droning. There’s sounds of children being amazed at the sea life, and some distant playing and shrieking which gets twisted and whirled into the stream. Some unexplained explosions which sound like cannon blasts are audible near the end, yet that part feels like a memory rather than a document of something actually occurring.


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