The latest instalment in Cédric Peyronnet‘s series of cryptically titled releases as Toy.Bizarre manifests as part of Drone Records‘ lovingly assembled Substantia Innominata imprint, arriving wrapped in a delightfully warped 10″ sleeve which not only manages to make brown and sepia look stunning ( a rare trick), but would also make a great poster as a result. The vinyl inside is clear, however, and each side reveals an unfolding tale of otherworldy, hypnotic soundscapes which seem to be built on the assumption that there is other world (or worlds) of sound not that far out of reach from this one.The neatly judged cut’n’paste aesthetic that Peyronnet deploys slips and slides from recursive watery loops through close-mic’ed hikes across rocky roads and grassy knolls into the core of the recording device itself, sounds snickering and fluttering in organised chaos as side [A] unfolds in a welter of self-transforming noises and haunted soundscapes. There’s a proximity to the sound which draws the listener right inside the Toy.Bizarre universe, a ghostly melange of things that could and should be recognisable as places, machinery or workings, but remain elusive in their alchemically altered electronic state.
The journey into Peyronnet’s hidden, highly personal environment — apparently created using field recordings of a place he has known since childhood — continues into side [B], where soaring FX textures offer a weightless counterpart to the (allegedly) solid representations of an (apparent) real world. Here, the creaks and filtered breezes slip gently into an acoustic representation of his biographical connection to a place and time; the sense of being drawn into a space that exists only in the sought-out sounds of Toy.Bizzare is all-enveloping and profoundly capable of aiding the suspension of disbelief in the immediate prosaic surroundings.
Moljebka Pvlse‘s In Love and Death, You Are Alone is also released on clear 10″ vinyl, and comes with a far darker cover, title and sense of intent to its music. The stark monochrome close-up images of leaf patterns and something presumably derived from the a finer detail of the same on the obverse set the scene for two side-long excursions deep into the drone.“In Love And Death” rises up on a cloudy thrum and an elevated sense of anticipation, organic organ tones circling the low-end holding patterns as Mathias Josefson and his two accomplices for this record, Lena Bergendahl and Karin Widin, layer their harmonics into a languid threnody. The choir of voices they summon seem to swell up from the very depths like backing singers to the angels separating themselves from the morass and gradually rising to the fore. Their arrival is almost imperceptible at first, but as they overtake and recede, the effect is at once beatific and beautiful. “You Are Alone” is a weighty affair, booming and searing in a pressurised bubble of sound that reveals its inner synthesizer pulse as a swarm of what sounds like heavily-treated guitar propels the listener yet further into the trio’s inner-space explorations. With a heart that beats at window-quaking frequencies — the tones on offer here demand volume as much as they do concentration — it expands and reverberates in cyclical motions whose demise is predicted from the very first note in an existential continuum entirely befitting its title.
The glide down into whispering FX trails and the languid decline of the guitar slide away from the absent pump of the low end; the fall into decay is inevitable as the terminal descent of the spiral scratching of the vinyl which transmits its mimetic material, its DNA encoded in the bumps and troughs of the inwardly-winding groove… but there is a revival possible, a rebirth, an eternal return left on offer through the simple act of lifting the tone arm, one celebrated in the replaying of the disc.