“Split” C40
(The Gertrude Tapes)

Hailing from Córdoba, Bardo Todol braids together a stream-o-conscious cross-section of disparate sonic events whose only perceivably unifying compositional factor is their living, breathing (and at times outright seething) essence of mobility, each textured cord jerking and flailing about, in parallel play, synced magically with the others, in a break-neck dash towards Elsewhere. This painstakingly meticulous discipline (entropy-worshipping Musique Concrète) is always incredibly hard to pull off even half as cohesively as BT has done here, and, across 20 minutes, side A will leave you feeling like you’ve just rapid-fire blinked in and out of existence across 200 distinctly unique points in time/space throughout Argentina’s very urbanity. This all is not to say that the journey is harrowing, or without stroll and swagger, but that it is ceaseless, and the sounds will not stop, even after the magnetic strip runs out.

Brussels’ Disposoción Asoleada, on side B, may be the best artist of all time to pair with Bardo Todol, as he (DA) also paints sounds with the palette of eternal metamorphosis, though with markedly less contrast, eschewing chiaroscuro transitions for a more raga’d coalescing of self-wrung instrumental contemplations that all find themselves fusing as one, rather than snaking about so contrastingly independent, an urgent vibrancy revealing itself over stretched-out time, not discrete bombasts. 

These last three The Gertrude Tapes releases have been Exceptionally engaging and are set to age as well alongside each other as they will on their own. Hell yeah!


—Jacob An Kittenplan