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1 review | 2 people love this record: be the 3rd! Formication are the Nottingham based duo of Alec Bowman and Kingsley Ravenscroft who have recorded for Lumberton Trading Company (Thighpaulsandra, Experimental audio Research). My previous experience of their music tells me the ideal way to submerge myself in their latest mini-album 'Agnosia' is through headphones, by candle light with an ice cold Guinness in hand. So here goes...The albums intr ... »

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Agnosia by Formication
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2 people love this record. Be the 3rd!
9/10 Ant Staff review, 16 October 2007
Formication are the Nottingham based duo of Alec Bowman and Kingsley Ravenscroft who have recorded for Lumberton Trading Company (Thighpaulsandra, Experimental audio Research). My previous experience of their music tells me the ideal way to submerge myself in their latest mini-album 'Agnosia' is through headphones, by candle light with an ice cold Guinness in hand. So here goes...

The albums intro begins with some sinister electronic percussion while some dark ambient atmospheric synths create an unsettling feeling. Distant voices that sound like they're speaking in tongues suggest a nightmarish paranoia... The second track has a wailing sound that resonates through the off kilter percussion while layers of glitches permeate the sound of broken machines, like the technology is dying, taking its final breath as it malfunctions. Then the third track has a warm, lush beauty. Minimal melodic keys and chimes that sound familiar, like coming out of a bad trip with a sense of hope. Simple in its execution yet astounding in its beauty. There are lots of subtle intricate pulses in the background that you can tune into. Deep listening for sure. Not quite the nightmare suggested by the albums opener...
So where next on this journey through abstract sonic worlds?...So you wake up from the nightmare and realize it was just a dream, you take comfort in the knowing and return to your state of sleep but the relief is temporary. You're back in that dark place, the most distant recesses of your subconscious. Artificial crackles and fizzes disorientate you, meanwhile the sounds of insect wings fluttering at a hundred miles an hour puncture the brooding sub bass that weaves in and out of bubbling liquids, deeply rich textures, bleak soundscapes and synthetic audio sculptures. All the while a sense of melancholy permeates. It's a new world but you feel like you've been here before. You can see a million shades of black and each one is more intriguing than the last. 'Agnosia' closes with a cinematic, haunting piece that evolves into a hybrid techno track with eerie vocals and a futuristic vibe that's full of lurking tension and passionate intensity. It eventually becomes totally claustraphobic but as soon as it all becomes too much and I need to turn the lights on I'm relieved with white light as the album fades away like the ghost of a distant memory. A set of tracks that are interesting on every level from their glacial surface through to each subtle detail in the production. At a running time of just over 32 minutes it doesn't overstay its welcome and therefore is ideal for some late night solo escapism during the impending winter.

Although the music is electronic in its construction it retains an organic, human feel throughout. Here are a duo who have truly mastered the art of black electronics. Like Darth Vader and Aleister Crowley on powerbooks after completing a PHD in sound design. Genuinely original sounding material that fans of Coil, Rapoon, Deathprod, and recent Dopplereffekt should investigate. Out on Harmful Records/ Dark Winter. Recommended.

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