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Our Love Will Destroy The World – I Hate Even Numbers

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Our Love Will Destroy The World – I Hate Even NumbersThe latest offering from Campbell Kneale (late of the recently-disbanded ambient/drone outfit  Birchville Cat Motel and also responsible for the immensely heavy [post=”black-boned-angel-verdun-2″ text=”Black Boned Angel”] doom project) finds him tackling the wonky end of electronics (de)composition in what comes over as part demonic exercise in digital bricolage, part attempt to submerge the listener in so many sounds that the sensation of being drowned in audio quicksand is one to be either escaped from as rapidly as possible or surrendered to in abject acceptance.

Dissonance in expansion is the order of the day on I Hate Even Numbers, as the title track of the LP demonstrates, and all the usual adjectives deployed at this point to describe electronic music can only come unstuck; there are squitters, there is plenty of shimmering and more than a shivery drop or two of trickling going on – but the sensations are not melodic, elevating or even especially noisy for that matter. When vocal samples thrust jarringly into the echoscape, the religious theme of the words is rendered unsettlingly queasy, while the beats which follow are decidedly fractured into the quasi-ethnodelic arrhythmia of “Second Pink Jihad.” Kneale makes a feature of the dense layering of sounds work particularly well here as the piece demonstrates the ability of the human brain to find a pattern in whatever gets thrown at it (including a reverberating stretch of uncurling feedback) and the track settles into an approximation of a hypnotic groove, albeit a thoroughly lateral one peppered with emergent audio hallucinations.

Likewise “Tokyo Modern magic” kicks side two into frenetic overlaid gear, the beats this time buried deep in a trebly electrical haze where synthetic or sampled didgeridoos could be being deployed among the brightly-cascading loops which might or might not actually be shifting across each other, but certainly give a good impression of doing so; and its only as these layers fade out that the previously undetected core of guitar reverberation becomes fully apparent. “Twins Like Swans” tumbles over its own propulsive roil of bell and percussive sounds like a clockwork carillon being played at 220bpm by a blind and possibly tone-deaf maniac with the resulting chaotic properties following the now-familiar pattern of the rest of the LP. So it falls to “Snipers On Skis” to close the second side with a frequency-jamming bursts of what could easily be mistaken for a self-detuning radio hopping across channels between nearby broadcasts while a lugubrious rhythm plods in the undertow.

As an experiment in pushing the boundaries of where music starts to emerge from destructured destructions of the idea of sequencing in electronic music,  I Hate Even Numbers works well, proposing that the listener – if they can take the time – should consider to what might otherwise (and perhaps equally validly) be considered a largely unlistenable, formless mass of sounds plonked higgeldy-piggeldy onto vinyl and left to their own stochastic devices, and to let chance work its own particular merry havoc on their ears.

-Linus Tossio-

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