Entanglement is album number three from Jessica Moss. Moss earned her stripes with a fifteen year stint in Canadian post-everything band Thee Silver Mt. Zion (and all variations on that name). She has also worked with such luminaries as Vic Chesnutt and Carla Bozulich. The title of this album explains it all, really: She uses violin and her voice to create twisting, swirling, overlapping - tangling, if you will, soundscapes. LP and CD on Constellation.
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After you’ve spent years railing against the injustice of the political establishment as part of one of the most exciting post-punk bands around what next do you turn your attentions to? For Silver Mt. Zion violinist Jessica Moss, the answer it turns out, is quantum. Entanglement is Moss’s second full length and is cannily named, capturing both her themes and methods.
The album’s two sides are two distinct pieces. The first, ‘Particles’ is likely the most effective attempt to capture cosmic awe since Roly Porter’s ‘Life Cycle Of A Massive Star’, released back in 2013. It opens with short blasts of light, which soon coalesce into a terrifyingly massive star sky. Moss is masterful in her use of repetition and pacing. These blasts are slowed down, before being joined by long bows of the violin. Rarely does music so successfully create a sense of perspective. Listening to ‘Particles’ feels like watching the opening scene of Robert Zemeckis’s ‘Contact’, the camera pulls away from earth, away from the solar system, away from the galaxy.
Though ‘Particles’ certainly uses Entanglements in its construction, the second side ‘Fractals’ is probably the better example. Across its four parts Moss uses her instrument in a more melodically, which coupled with looping makes for wonderful musical notes that play with texture and harmony. On its third part, ‘(Truth 3)’, Moss uses her voice to create a drone as foundation. Quantum is at its simplest, about how things are connected, what better way to celebrate than to use the musical tool most vital for connection people. ‘Entanglements’ is a beautiful album, and one that reminds us that though we are very small, we are significant.
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