Review of Somi [12k1087]

Touching Extremes (IT)

Just think of the abundance of records and books accumulated along the decades. Think of the hard disks full of bazillions of files that are never going to be attended, but “I HAD to have that”. And finally: if you – like many of us – are a musician, remember the eagerness to acquire the highest possible quantity of instruments and softwares in desperate attempts to amplify a palette that HAD to comprise “that” type of sound.

In a way, one hypothesizes Taylor Deupree undergoing a phase of rethinking about a similar process of over-gathering. In Somi, the core of the matter was born from manual loops performed on “simple” sources and accompanied by the ear-pleasing dirtiness of an imperfect-by-nature handheld cassette recorder. There is indeed a hint to a circadian precision of sorts, for Deupree was looking for a balance between gestural spontaneousness and a relative temporal exactitude. The superimposed circularities were in fact created with an eye on a chronometer, selecting a different length for each repetition; in essence, a one-man slow polyrhythm of mind-assuaging melodies. The experiment is not new but, truth be told, the result in this case is excellent: the album might become a paradigm in the genre. The involuntary intersections, the glimmering harmonics, the nudity of the single notes, the chiming merged with the spurious layers: all the components contribute to elicit a sense of naturally sedated detachment. Deupree’s effort seems to have been rewarded with a warm welcome by the most lenitive frequencies that his instrumentation could have produced.

As listeners, we can join the sequence of events and use it as a shelter. What was occurring around us while the music unfolded was perceived as an interference to be swatted aside pronto. This collection of little sonic gems is extremely useful to underscore the rare fragments of productive solitude on offer today.

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