SCALD HYMN "Pearl Diffident" C47 (L.I.T.L.)

Western Masser Erik Brown might just be the most prolific person in harsh noise right now. I don't think there's been a time in the past year that I've been to a show at his house where I haven't left with at least one or two new tapes from one of his half dozen projects. All of them on point in quality and vision. He makes tapes that are what he wants noise tapes to look like: photocopied blackened, garbage. (If you've been to Cold Spring Hollow, you know that house is just teeming with inspiration). And the audio is pretty close.

About a year to year and a half ago two things really stepped up Erik's game. First, he started collaborating with Dan Greenwood of Diagram A, and second, he got his hands on a digital sampler. Greenwood taught Brown some serious tricks for mulching field recordings into glistening heaps of sonic rubble. The sampler has allowed Erik to maintain a level of clarity and control that otherwise would quickly get lost in tape-to-tape processing. 

"Pearl Diffident" is two side-long tracks of just the sort of humid, dark and harsh sound collage I love. The A side churns along mercilessly and amorphously; shredded tinfoil shaking in the wind played at half speed, dumpster wreckage cascading in on itself, maybe even trees whispering in the summer wind behind the house overblown to a horrifying wall of noise. Its molten lava, and won't be stopped. Side two is sparser and rhythmic. An appropriate juxtaposition to the preceding barrage. It doesn't hold the same visceral impact of the A side, it's a slow burn. Sounds are murky, but the sources are a little clearer if you know what's hidden there. The A side is high contrast. The second is duller and muddier, throbbing in the night.
(this album isn't posted there, but the contact is good)

-- Mike Barrett