werneck-wretchmond: oneiric hardware (19F3)

specifications: the first release from west country-based non-boutique nano-label 19F3. a cd of manipulated field-recordings sourced entirely from server-arrays, hard-drives and pc peripherals from belo horizonte, brasil and yeovil, somerset. the resulting pieces are a curious fusion of the mechanistic and the organic: a series of rem-sleep sirensongs built from whirring servos, damaged cpus and haunted read-write heads. ghost-industrial music. sound-files rub up against each other to create accidental textures, rhythms, harmonics and voices. a chance meeting on a pc world customer service desk of a zip-drive and a storage drum. rem vs. ram. file under: machines that go bump in the night, ferromagnetic nightmares, head crashes, somnambulant automata, data archeology/salvage, disaster recovery, nocturnal back-ups, random-access retrieval, music for ps/2 ports.

what to make of this oddly warped little disc? well frankly those expecting some kind of merzbow / pierre schaeffer electrick-crackle-a-thon may well be a teeny toaty bit disappointed. not the straightforwardly remorseless skree of loading commodore 16 tape built over the hissing vooom of malfunctioning pc fan choir predicted. not the unlistenable klanking strammash i was expecting, nay demanding. ah but my disillusionment quickly tempered by the realisation that it’s so much more than the inexorable noise i’d lazily set my shriveled black heart on.

nope. what it is i s’pose is some strange form of drone, some rattled electronic hypnagoggery mashed up with pink noise and somnambulant mechanical weirdness. loadsa references to sleep and dream and memory (and of course abandoned tech); the titular g(r)eek oneiric. thematically we could talk about oneirophenric hallucinations and the monging of sleep deprivation and the frozen horrors of sleep paralysis (with the auditory om and hiss and fizz that accompany it). the confusion, the clouds, the mists of everyday when you haven’t slept properly for seven eight months. believe me i know (biblically) of these things.

i mentioned pink noise that incestuous offspring of white noise. is it omnipresent? flicker noise spewing from machines; in heartbeats and dna; in economics as long-term memory effect; the modeling of mental states. is this some forty minute representation of all these things?

nonsense emerges…

the meshing of engineering and biology, from blade arrays to hippocampus. not sure if it’s some kindof dadaist juxtaposition or whether i should be drawing links between gray matter and computer circuitry; between, to quote, rem and ram; between memory and fantasy; between the real and imagined; between waking and sleeping. weird synchronicities here with my short-term andré breton obsession creeping into brainspace again. the idea of the para-oneiric, the hypnagogic in cinema. stirring sensations not quite awake not quite asleep. well these same ideas are slinking out here. not sure if the title refers to on / off machine noise (the powering up pc fzzzz on track two) or the asleep / awake inducements of the sounds on offer here. or both. or neither. dream-like. in fact i’ll take the cinematic / dream thing a bit further and bring up eraserhead with it’s hazy unlogic and mecha-ambient soundtrack.

oh yeah hypnagogia. keenan’s amused me with this one. and no bugger spells it right. literally to lead away, convey, abduct. put about by ages ago by alfred maury (yeah fuck you freud) for the transitional state between the indistinguishableness of wakefulness and sleep. it’s all very aural, all very nonsensical, and dare i say it again all very surrealist automatism. and from that to parahypnagogia, where the subconscious invades yr conscious life. kindofbutnotquite daydreaming in otherwords. and from that to polysomnography, the attempts to study, to record the physical changes that occur during a period that most of us rarely think as corporeal – sleep.  blahhhh…

intriguing unrelated thoughts aside…

so yeah it’s music. did i mention that. kind of like a junkyard kevin drumm. that’s yr kiss-off right there. sometimes harsh, sometimes pretty in a skewed way. if, as it’s claimed, made entirely by malleable lo-tech field recordings and taped machine rape then i am hugely fucking impressed at the cinescope heinz of the sounds on offer here. ghost whoops and factory whistles in a pleasingly homemade way. it’s all belltones and aquatic gloop. the scrape of lead pipe on concrete, the pneumatic rattle of drill bit on plastic and steel. spectral moans and brass distortions conjured up by banging on aleister crowleys robotic exoskeleton. there’s a creeping bent of stuff, whatever that stuff is, that sounds like strings and keys. all with a minimalist techno no-fi terminator vibe of tired pc’s wheezing to life. all my unwaking, nondreaming sounds like this.


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