I Wanna Be a Rhythm
One-man electronica project H.O.H. releases his first “real” album on the small Fuck Subtle imprint. I Wanna Be a Rhythm proves to be an unanimous success, braving the regularly purist electronica camp to come up with an astonishing 55 minutes of squalled glitches, ambient white noise and barely audible melodic shifts, all marked with an urgent sense of purpose and direction.
The brave nine-minute long opening track “ABRBRDG” starts off with washes of textural ambience before a minimalist beat comes in to cut up the sounds and eventually to move it into eerie, electrocratic white noise territory. A drenching, exhausting track that is immediately succeeded by the aggressive clicks and cuts of “Hilde” and the brilliant Kraftwerk-goes-ambient track “Solo Dans # 1.” The fact that H.O.H. makes such disparate variety hang together and even to make sense is testament to his impressive overview and his singular vision.
Broadly based around twisted monotony that — despite the label’s moniker — work by adding slight change and whispered nuances, H.O.H.’s outlook is one of introspection and depth as explored through angular shifts and a frantic musical ambiguity. With soundscapes formed around accidental glitches and found sounds, H.O.H. seems to try to make sense out of everyday life by computerizing the human being as well as by humanizing electronica through subtle extrapolations of sound and sense.
The album title hints at this double-edged project, but an even stronger indication of it is the album=EDs progress towards a more established, defined humanoid electronica sound as it goes along. Incorporating what has come before to form a fully realized statement, I Wanna Be a Rhythm seems to move towards a defined but obscure goal, reaching some sort of uneasy, complex resolve by the album’s end.
A brave and singular artists, H.O.H. is carving out a path all of his own in the current electronica landscape, and he is doing it with a curiosity and open-ended playfulness that make this an unusually rewarding listening experience. Definitely worth checking out for any fan and follower of minimalist electronica with an attitude.
Fuck Subtle Recordings: http://www.kliik.org