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Compound Eye – Journey From Anywhere

Editions Mego

Compound Eye - Journey From AnywhereThis’ll be the second Freq review where I start with “I miss Coil” but I do miss them, they felt necessary, at least in my bubble. They didn’t seem in the least contingent and thus neither of them being here – still – is vaguely preposterous, almost illogical. That said, there’s still hints, around the corners, in not especially dark places, under stones, inside the wind. There’s still stuff out there, just not enough. There’s still genuine lost things, popping up occasionally on YouTube, things that make sense (or would have one day made sense with a little tweaking, with some Balance). But there’s never enough and it’s… irritating. It feels like you wanted Jhonn and Sleazy to have no lives at all, to just produce, to just give, to make things to make you happy when you knew that that would never be, that it was missing the point entirely. They couldn’t ever be machines; even their machine music, their ElpH stuff wasn’t machine music. Even then, the humanity leaked through.

I know this is rude. Or, rather, I know that people might consider this rude. It isn’t meant to be and isn’t. But, of course, Coil aren’t Compound Eye, Compound Eye must stand alone; it’s just not appropriate or fair to base an entire review on another band (especially one that’s dead, who are out of the loops). At the very least it’s lazy (ahem) journalism. I know it’s wrong to just tip towards a better known band and blah, especially when one of the members, Drew McDowell, was in Coil and kind of responsible for a lot of how they sounded (these are genuinely his sounds) but, actually, no one stands alone; those times are gone. These relate to Coil in every way. Sharing a member in this sense is incidental; it’s an ethic and a voice that has been passed down through the circles. And Compound Eye work this ethic better than most. I’ve listened to this a lot; it’s helped.

So… there’s clearly, transparently, flagrantly (how else?) lots of almost Coil things in this album. There’s quite a few things that might have been or might as well have been Coil. It would be churlish to not notice. It’s not just them. Coil are like the little guy, just glimpsed, in Don’t Look Now; you can hear them out the corner of your eye (was that ever on a Coil run-off groove?). If you want specifics, there’s the long form, rising, humchatter drones on tracks like “Journey Into Anywhere.” Which works wonderfully, which compels at every (g)listen, which keeps the faith, beautifully and reminded me a bit of another great Coil-ish artist Kemper Norton, especially his stuff on Carn. Again, circles.

There’s the mostly skewed little beams of light and carnival melodies and pit-pattering drums on “Open Interval 2,” the sharp turns and angles and sheet metal fuzz (which really reminds me of Time Attendant) and drop-outs of “Cosmic Exhaust: The Selector (Cut-up composition).” This is a great album, a tribute to a bubble, a wonderful trudge. I really hope that the authors of this seamless/seem-less, transporting music aren’t offended by all my mewling, by my loss, by my ridiculous refusal to let the fuck go; if you love someone who loves Coil then this will help them heal.

-Loki-

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