Sunday, November 1, 2015

EARTH/VESSEL “Earth/Vessel”
(White Reeves Productions)




There are two things immediately apparent about Earth/Vessel, the duo of Jeremy Yamma and Michael Skz. One is that this is some wild 8-bit video-game ambient weirdness. I imagine the Earth/Vessel boys are soundtracking some sort of lo-tech retrofuturistic space mission in their minds, and that’s great, because somebody’s gotta do that or we’re going to be stuck here on this planet long after the air ceases to be breathable. Two is that they’re from Pittsburgh, so their minds are probably already polluted by whatever toxins they’ve ingested from the Allegheny River during their residence there. It’s an epidemic – Power Pill Fist used to make this type of stuff in his early days.

And that’s great news, I would say, to be compared favorably to PPF, because I love that dude’s output. Earth/Vessel is definitely on the ambient side of the PPF spectrum, but not ambient ambient, like sleep-inducing Ambien ambient. No way. These synth slingers are cosmic to the max, but every track on this self-titled cassette, every move and tone bubbles with unearthly pixelated glee and horror and glee again and maybe space doom. It’s anti-percussive Atari fight music for Cold War escapist fantasies.

The tracks are fairly short – opener “Initiation” and closer “Superliminal” each eclipse the five-minute mark, and none of the others reach three. Which is almost too bad, because the longer ones are my favorites, mainly because they last longer and give you a better sense of where they’re going. Also, I’m a glutton for gratification (who isn’t?), and while not every lengthy release deserves its runtime, I could stand a little more Earth/Vessel in my life. So strap in and hop into that warp zone pipe with Earth/Vessel in your ears, or blast off into the cosmos where aliens, as envisioned by our great and eminent sage Adam Sandler, await to turn our civilization into space dust. At least that’s what I think happens, I don’t really know – I’ve never seen that movie.



--Ryan Masteller


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