Friday, May 26, 2017

BILLY GOMBERG “Transition” C30
(Dinzu Artefacts)




If there’s a Dinzu aesthetic, Billy Gomberg’s got it. It’s like that scene in Back to the Future where Marty’s playing Chuck Berry at the Enchantment Under the Sea Dance. “Hey Billy, it’s your cousin, Marvin … Marvin GOMBERG. You know that new sound you’re looking for? Well listen to this!” Obviously, it didn’t quite go down that way, because Billy Gomberg didn’t get a phone call from his cousin directing him to listen to some future person whose sound he would later “originate.” (We can argue closed time loops all day and how ridiculous they are, but we won’t.) But really, is there a more fitting home for Gomberg’s music than Dinzu Artefacts? I submit that there is not.

Transition is an album that lives up to its name, a drifting, evolutionary signpost marking the passage of time. As befits a Dinzu release, field recordings are processed through effects and electronics, the sounds taking on entirely new identities as they’re filtered through Gomberg’s vision of glacial motion. The tracks are untitled, marked only by the amount of time they fill. And fill they do, as you must pay careful attention to the compositions, allowing them to consume your focus so that you don’t miss a single detail. You could call them drones, but that would be selling them short – there’s distinctive movement in the works, distinctive tones, unearthed emotional stimuli whose raw receptors remind you of events in your life that you’d forgotten. Wisps of memory once again become tactile. You remember who you once were.

Now, transitioning back to me being a cad, imagine again Billy Gomberg, hero of high school dances, enlightening an auditorium full of students with his cerebral excursions. Instead of foxtrotting to the pure sound emanating from the PA, everybody would go all glassy-eyed, entranced by the sonics. They’d be under the spell of Billy Gomberg for hours. That would be something. Somebody spike the punch.

Billy Gomberg
Dinzu Artefacts

--Ryan Masteller

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