|Subject: Foundry Label Overview 2001|
All the Stars Burning Bright
Zero Point: Lessons In Being Nothing
The Boy Beneath the Sea
Label: The Foundry
Prior to its relationship with Hypnos, The Foundry (an underground electronic/experimental label out of Berkeley, CA) already had a reputation for releasing excellent and strange compact discs. The partnership in 2001 with Hypnos provides The Foundry with the resources to reach a bit wider, while giving Hypnos the opportunity to be involved in the release of truly interesting "sound art".
According to label founder Mike Bentley, The Foundry was created to serve as an entity facilitating creative endeavours, "I see my Foundry as a place where machines and technology are used as tools to perform magical operations, where emotions and intuition interface with science and knowledge in an attempt to create a new world communicated via sound, image and words."
eM (a.k.a. Michael Bentley) demonstrates the concept mentioned above on his release All the Stars Burning Bright, an album of spacemusic incorporating audio retrieved from NASA probes and his own unique approach to electronic music. Examining sound as if through a magnifying glass, eM finds the detail that others usually miss. Of his method and style, eM says, "I am trying to find ways of describing our world through electronic music".
Freely describing his music as "difficult", eM challanges the listener's ideas of where music ends and abstraction begins. "I hear music and rhythm in so many sounds... The world is rich with music if we choose to perceive it that way". All the Stars Burning Bright is an exploration of sound, music and technology requiring the listener to put forth some effort in discovering the meaning of this art.
The Boy Beneath the Sea takes 40 minutes to unfold its story, literally. This album features somber narration by Dean Santomieri read aloud over a shifting tide of electronics, guitar and percussives. The listener is provided with a unique experience, guided first by the tenor of the fairytale, then by the pure sonic character of the reader's voice and ribbon of words. It will be hard to ever know whether this tale is a childern's story or an odd modern fable as the listener is sure to be so drawn in by the album's rolling soundscape and the reader's reassuring voice as to always lose the thread of the story - but no matter, the purpose of this album is to transport and so it does. Any number of plot twists, themes and conclusions are possible what with the concept of the album (the story) being processed, altered and embellished upon through the unlimited permutations offered by the drifting mind.
Zero Point: Lessons In Being Nothing is a re-working (or re-examination) of tracks first realized by the artist known as The Ambient Temple of Imagination, now on this effort known as Seofon. The orginal source material (the album Planetary House Nation) was re-mixed, re-ordered, re-processed, re-cycled, added to, subtracted from and produced into a deeper, more expansive work which blurs the borders between ambient-ethno and tribal-world. This epic aural excursion features the sounds and manipulations of Steve Roach, Vidna Obmana and Seofon with fellow collaborators Stephen Kent, Robert Rich, Not Breathing and Thermal. But trying to discern the individuals on this album will be as difficult as noticing when a new track begins; the talents and contributions on Zero Point combine perfectly to form "one from many".
With a title like Accretions by an artist known as Mollusk, one would expect a work inspired by antediluvian sealife. This album does not dissapoint. The electronic music on Accretions is heavily inspired by the fascinating and otherworldly qualities of the ancient lifeforms that dwell beneath the waves, interpreted sonically using the most modern technological means available. The listener is submerged in sounds which seem to originate underwater - perhaps captured at a great distance from some huge unidentifiable source yet at other times recorded right inside the developing skull of a tiny creeping thing. From the deep rumbling of the outgoing tide, to the gritty scratch of a saltwater creature adding to its shell... this album delves into the depths of experimental sound. "many brave hearts are asleep in the deep"
Buy these albums direct from Hypnos/Foundry
|- Chuck van Zyl/STAR'S END 6 February 2002|
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