It begins with a gallop, a heartbeat, an organismic rhythm… fractionally-dissonant beats attempt to interrupture the flow, without success… another layer, a 1950s UFO hovers above it all, at varying altitude… a civil alert siren drones, insistent, ignored… electronic paper is repetitively crumpled… layers on layers, until the bottom-most stalls… unsupported, now free-falling, floating… rested, defibrillated, the pulse returns, strong as ever… until the final faltered beat.
And that’s track #1. Try #2…
This is the second album from UNITED COLOR OF BLACK METAL: screen-printeded white-on-white cover, white vinyl inside, no colours in evidence at all (though mixing light of all colours would give you white light, I suppose… any heat?) and not particularly black metal-like in sound. Instead, a very heavy and intense form of minimalism. It doesn’t sound like anything else I’ve heard, it’s deceptively straightforward in a way that defies (my) simple description, and it has wormed, pummelled its way into my affections.
Confession of ignorance time… I can’t tell how these wonderful vibrations are made. I want to say it’s all electronic (certainly, the sounds are at least processed electrically, even if only through amplification?) but the liner notes, Bandcamp page, etc. are all rather coy about instrumentation and methods. The only clue is referring to Jean-Baptiste Geoffroy and Guillaume Brot’s past work as drummer and guitarist, respectively. Personally, I can imagine (and I want this to be true!) that everything heard originates from some part of a guitar or drum kit; all originally analogue, then processed electronically. For all the alien effect, there’s a warmth to the sound, an organic quality that insinuates painlessly and irrevocably into the auditory cortex to be endlessly interpreted: spherical temple bells, wooden rain, frying bacon, an organic machine-press, J. Arthur Rank on experimental drone-gong, you name it, just under half an hour of elusive imagination and ambiguity.
“Synchronicités” is available via the Kythibong Bandcamp page on vinyl or download.