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Synth drone fans will like this one - Nils Quak and Dino Spiluttini take a side each to showcase their modular synth tweaking prowess over ten tracks, all pressed onto a shiny gold slab of vinyl. I’m listening to Spiluttini’s side first, bursting into action with the desolate and slightly industrialised ambience of ‘Anxiety’ with distorted high-end pulses and churning, rumbling bass blasts which grind out an ominous melody. He settles down after this though, with a no less melodic but much more sleepy and calming style on tracks like ‘Downer’ and ‘Theme For A Bleak Life’, although ‘Crawling’ does return to the more confrontational style of the opener in a disjointed yet hypnotic way with clockwork stop-start blocks of twitching alarm-clock synth. His closer ‘Weak Love’, meanwhile, mixes intermittent static with distant panpipey drones and weird reverby metallic twitches, like it started peaceful but then got broken.
Flip it and we’ve got Nils Quak’s contributions. These are longer and more patient, with less focused melodies and more slow-burning tone layering. ‘Octagonal Journey’ mixes subtle low in the mix drones and barely perceptible machine gun hi hat twitches against deep, echoed foghorn blasts, like a stricken trawler drifting through a foggy sea, which slowly morphs and warps into hallucinogenic glassy splatter and disjointed twinkles. ‘Tropic Spirals’ has a feverish discordant drone which shrilly cuts across slowly morphing mid-end melodies in a queasy churn. Spiluttini’s side is easier to listen to, but both contributions are satisfyingly varied voyages through the bleepy imaginations of these two characters.
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- Modular Anxiety by Dino Spiluttini & Nils Quak
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