CD: Punch Records 014 [2006]

wetSun 7
lucifile eins
g-rays violet
a dark sides miracle
alder sides epsylons part I

With 1997EV’s latest, and second release, Punch Records continues to insulate their label against specific genre, other than that of the bizarre, the weird, the wondrous. And "dead.ends.sinful" most assuredly fits that bill, mixing guitar and noise in refreshing exhalations.

Like the American horror writer, Clark Ashton Smith’s decayed Earth at the end of time, Zothique, the end of the sun heralds the beginning of "dead.ends.sinful", a short promenade of harried geometries of frequency lingering of the ruins of a machine; the refuse of humankind. A roundelay of destruction disports the ghosts of civilisation. This brief and initial egress, ‘wetSun7’ seeps solarised rays into the next track, a ten-minute eclipse of crepuscular experimentation, one of many that stands on the cusp of desuetude. Acoustic guitar weaves a theurgic scene for the excoriating steel squeals, while a monologue that reminds one somewhat of David Tibet (ala Current 93) exhortations echoes amidst fugitive electric guitar and oscillations. ‘g-rays violet’ launches next a somnolent dirge of guitar with thunderous toms, feedback howling and coruscating, wearing a SWANS mantle deserved. More writhing vocals scuttle through the blanket of dark rock, incantations over a dying sun that dehydrate with a final spasm into dark ambient drone. Continuing song with experimentation finds ‘eerie’ laden in neofolk guitar, yawing chasms, bathed in quivering crescendos of noise and western reverie, harmonicas from another time. Fires burn and drums explode, an artifice mimics human noise. ‘a dark sides miracle’ presents a peculiar guitar duet, Orientalist with a European traditional overlay of vocals, susurrations and drums rumble throughout the track, spastic organs gambol. Finally, ‘alder sides epsilons part I’ delivers the final stage of pupation, growling distorted guitars heave a serpentine melody in counterpoint to another clamouring chaotic noise, all the while the crescendo populated by subtle murmuring until its until complete.

The digipak comes as ever lovely produced by the folks at Punch Records in thick, glossy cardstock. A simple panel back with clear jewel tray, featuring solarised images of the welkin and a black hole or nova over cityscape. Sparse occult imagery within ghosts the liner notes.


[1997EV] / [Punch Records]

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