Sunday, 12 June 2011

William Basinki - The Disintegration Loops

First off, this isn't an easy album. There is two tracks, one ten minutes, the other over an hour.

And unlike most extremely long tracks, it doesn't feature radicle genre hopping, sound changes or pace. In fact the first track consists of a 10 second beautiful string loop, repeated again and again for over an hour.

And there lies the genius of this album. Each time the loop is played, a tiny bit is snipped out, disintegrated. By 2o minutes that loop is fragmented, it crackles and stutters like a broken down car. By 40 minutes much of the loop is silence, filled with the echo of the strings, only broken by the howl of strings as the beg to break from this cage. By the time the piece is finishing, what's left is a shadow of the loop at the start, a shattered, disorientated piece of music.

Some have compared the loops disintegration to human aging. Others to the process our memories are destroyed by our own bodies. Basinki seems to have created a replicate of life here. Day after day of the same things, repeated and repeated, until everything begins to fade and the silence washes over.

Yes this album will take multiple listens, and definitely requires the right mood. But eventually this music experiment will reward you. One for the night-time philosophers.

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