Leave Your Wet Brain in the Hot Sun
Despite an overall forbidding and disorienting sound, Warmth (Roxanne Jean Polise) deserves notice, if for nothing else than bringing a sticky organic warmth to the usually more sterile noise/collage genre. Leave Your Wet Brain… is the sonic approximation of a long-abandoned device composed of snaking coils, acres of patch cords, rusted railroad spikes, gently waving cilia, malfunctioning plasma globes, and an orphan’s heart, beginning to slowly sputter and grind back to life after decades of misuse. This machine, Warmth, masterminded by Steev Thompson, moves according to its own inner logic and rhythms — while listening to it, I have been repeatedly asked if there is something wrong with my stereo and/or computer. This makes me like it even more. The pieces on this album are carefully stitched together; listen closely and you will find that this is an alarmingly commonplace collection of everyday found sounds, altered and echoed and counterpointed off one another to create a newer, stranger whole. And that’s just the opening track. “Brain in the” feels like chamber music to me, though it is anything but, at times unbearably gentle singing feedback and static surges — perfect for soundtracking a Milies feverdream. “hot sun” at one point starts to sound like someone sleeping next to you, gentle breaths recreated by the creaks of machinery, before disappearing into a thick, soupy fog of sinewaves and static — nineteen minutes of virus-ridden ambiance. “thank you cloud. fuck you deerfly” is naturally replicating ambient oscillations giving way to hellish Merzbow-esque noise that finally burns itself out in one final, white hot flash. “watch the animals glisten as they rust & rejoice” is like dolphin songs accompanied by heavily echoed and completely disembodied guitar and piano.
Reminds me of Christian Marclay’s record collage experiments and Christoph de Babylon or NON or Eno fully in love with his machines, instead of as a theoretical exercise.
Digitalis Recordings: www.digitalisindustries.com