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- Traditional Music of Notional Species Vol II by Rashad Becker
9/10 Ant Staff review, 07 December 2016
Almost three and a half years after Rashad Becker unleashed his debut album ‘Traditional Music of Notional Species Vol. I’ on PAN, now, finally the second volume hits the shelves. While that particular record was tantamount to being fondled by the tentacles of some giant squid-like, pulsating iridescent organism, Vol. II carries equal levels of WTF? Within its grooves. The title to these records is a dead giveaway i.e musics of a species that does not exist in reality, which leaves plenty of room for imagination -- be that some mystical lost race, deep sea cretins, micro-organisms, primate like creatures, insect cyborgs and beyond. The point being it doesn’t sound human, but not just that - although it’s clearly synthesized electronic music it sounds both synthetic and organic. I get a real sense of beings/ entities communicating. One minute a large mammoth / elephant type creature sounds like it’s weeping, the next a fruit fly is playing bagpipes with a tiny whoopie cushion.
There are ecstatic and humorous moments, but overall the general vibe I get from these communications is somewhat sorrowful, almost like a cry for help from a species on the border of extinction. It would appear we’re not the only species that turns to music to communicate our feelings when we’re troubled.
A fantastic, weird and wonderful, truly alien sounding record. Highly recommended.
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