Here's something that will sell out quickly. Chris Douglas's Dalglish project has long been a go to for visionary future thinking electronics and as our Ant says in a previous review "Just reading the words Dalglish and vinyl in the same sentence is enough to make hardcore electronic music fans salivate". The label describes this release as "a web of splintering percussive patterns, arrhythmic textures and amorphous forms, titled in an asymmetrical variant of Scots Gaelic". Run of 300 copies.
-On clear vinyl with white label. Enclosed in silkscreened PVC cover containing thumb cut slit.-Includes transparent film insert. -Contains two locked grooves at the conclusion of Side A and Side B.
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The latest piece in the Dalglish puzzle emerges as the ‘Dorcha Aigeann’ 6 track EP on new San Francisco label Ge-stell. Pressed on clear vinyl in a PVC screen-printed sleeve in an edition of 300 copies.
My great admiration for the work of Chris Douglas (Scald Rougish, Seaes, O.S.T etc.) is well documented on these pages, and so on this occasion I’ll try to dispense with the fanboy comments and make an attempt to describe what I hear when the needle hits the grooves.
On first listen, as with a lot of Douglas’s work the sound is intense, often overwhelming and can feel somewhat impenetrable, intimidating even. On the surface perhaps could be perceived as intentionally abstract but once inside the music, there lies a story, some kind of narrative that feels like grains of sand passing through the fingers as you attempt to grasp exactly what it is.
Opening track ‘Aois’ is comprised of layered drones which feel like metallic surfaces gently morphing into new forms while concrete/ electronics increase the overall alien and alienated feel of the music. Upon ending I wonder where the fuck I’ve just been and where I’m going remains an intriguing mystery...
Next stop ‘Onair’ is a disorientating assault on the senses with blasts of noise, static, tumbling metal and fractured strings. This is unmistakably the idiosyncratic voice of Chris Douglas communicating in a language even a diehard fan like myself is yet to fully decode. It’s easy to be dismissive of a language you don’t quite understand, but learning, especially in this case is extremely rewarding. Repeated listens reveal previously unnoticed elements in this meticulously crafted complex sound world.
‘Uisge’ has somewhat of a submerged aquatic feel making me imagine a microscopic deep sea environment; worlds within worlds. This is how I imagine the sonification of such a microcosm would sound with minute iridescent alien like creatures, glowing, working, living. Of course this can take another listener to a different place entirely, the only restriction is your imagination.
‘Aonich’ is a headfuck in the best possible way. A remarkably intense and frantic piece of electronic music. The methods of construction remain unknown but the creative energy and realisation are simply astounding, I could write a full review on this track alone attempting to dissect the numerous elements and I think I’d still fail to articulate just how completely otherworldly it sounds. A pair of ears and a turntable are all that is required to be transported. To think of a future music like this, one that disregards conventional electronic music form is as revelatory as any psychedelic drug experience I’ve had in the past. As far as I’m concerned this is important, pioneering work.
The haunting ‘Gsm Intv 4’ feels like it’s summoned ghosts of the previously departed. A short but perfectly formed Coil-esqe darker ambient piece that despite it’s duration, very successfully resonates emotionally.
The EP closes with ‘Mrin’; a smorgasbord of shapeshifting and colliding dislocated and fractured rhythms, bleeps, ticks, pulses, crashes etc. Unfathomably complex yet extremely inviting, it feels like a privileged glimpse into an unseen world.
To boot; each side ends with some absolutely cracking locked grooves. Highly recommended but you already knew that was coming. Light years ahead of the game as ever.
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