Driphouse "Axe" c31 (Gel)

Another debut release, this time coming from Daren Ho, formerly of Racoo-oo-oon, now running his own label under the name Gel. Its first release is "Axe" by Driphouse which is Daren's solo recordings. Though the title may lead you to think (hope?) that this is 31 minutes of Daren standing on a mountaintop assaulting his Flying-V guitar while his hair blows in the wind and lightning splinters the very earth he's standing on, well, it's not that. In fact there's very little evidence of the credited guitar on here, except the end of the second side features some very unmasked guitar playing that stands in stark contrast to the heavily balanced first side. The tape's first side is a long comet tail of arpeggiated synth wrapped and delivered in lush layers of unrolling cat tails of electronics and less obvious guitar work. A really well composed side of melodic, clean and controlled synth with a degree of freedom that keeps your ears perked.

The second side is a counterpoint, much more quiet, without the heavily padded synthesizer lines built on top of each other. The space and guitar work create a much more difficult listening environment, where the first side encourages the listener to relax the second side, with its focus on lack forces your ear to pay closer attention to the developments and directions the music takes.

Comes packaged in a really nice color transparency with great minimal lettering/design.

Not sure of the edition and there's no website up yet, use your highly evolved email skills to get in touch and pick a copy:

picture at top is of both the Driphouse "Axe" cassette and the second Gel release "Exterminator Sunshine 2" by Ryan Garbes (which also rules!)