erasing clouds

Phosphene, Projection

reviewed by anna battista

If you're a fan of abstract and ethereal music, Phosphene's new album Projection (Secret Eye) is simply made for you. Ex-Electroscope John Cavanagh, now recording under the Phosphene moniker, has finally released the follow up to Infrasonic Waves. The album contains ten tracks, some longer, some barely one minute long, but all quite unique.

Opening with the lulling "The Third Bell", the album contains the beautifully fragile "A Spherical Song", the odyssey of noises of "Alex Trocchi's M.U." (M.U. stands for Methedrine University, the place in New York where meth-heads would go to paint microscopic things on old chunks of driftwood), the atmospheric "Tirana Calls", graced by a music box and suspended between beautiful and scary atmospheres, and "Cosy Sphere" which, reminds of the best tracks by Clinic. Towards the end of the album the listener will find the hieratic "An The Ship Of Sunrise Burning" and the longest and probably weirdest track of the album, "This Is Not A Woodstove", containing samples of a recording of a woodstove courtesy of two American doctors who study pataphysical phenomena.

Projection, which features a psychedelic cover by Vic Singh, the photographer who did the cover for Pink Floyd's first album, favours collages of sounds to structured tracks, long instrumental pieces interspersed with elongated bursts of noises to songs and, above all, the pleasure of sound textures over texts and lyrics. How would I define Cavanagh then? Simply as a contemporary philosopher of cosmic music.


Issue 23, May 2004

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