Tuesday, March 10, 2009
Vakhchav - Hunting Horns (Abandon Ship Records CD-R)
Vakhchav is one Nickolas Mohanna, who previously was completely unknown to me, and now that I do know who it is it doesn't serve much purpose beyond deepening the mystery herein so tough noogies to anyone looking for answers. I got none. For some reason I initially thought this was by a band called Hunting Horns that I believed I'd remembered hearing about, but that was wrong too so hey. Anyway, this is really all beside the point, as the whole deal here is the sounds. Right then, moving on...
Whoever he is, this Mohanna fellow lays down some pretty heavy duty material on this release. Six tracks all and all, each combining moist, synth stretches that shimmer real nice like. "Chaste Poiiison Throne" opens with a lengthy (15 minutes) foray into receding drone line after receding drone line before--I think it is anyway...--an accordion enters to push some airy chords around the bath. Or maybe it's a harmonica. Or both. Either way, it's excellently paced and the piece allows for itself to unfold, never feeling like a forced effort at a certain sound. Apparently this was all envisioned in accordance with some dreams of "running into a crystalline water mass" which is about right, although this sounds more like sleeping in them then than going head-on in.
The second track, "Glow," does move more into that realm though, as a thick guitar chord loops over and over with certain crashing effect. Still maintains its fragility though, very translucent. "We Should Share a % of Our Feelings" goes back to delay and shimmer land, with bubbling synths leading to nowhere at all for a good five minutes, a nice foray into the far heavier "A Modern Transport." Here planes cross overhead and lights go fluorescent as Mohanna tries to break the speed barrier in Tokyo. Sweet sequencer stuff that has enough lack of direction to steer it clear of any techno trappings these sounds might connote.
The last two tracks, "Petrus Desbois" and the fittingly epic "Epoch" both fit snugly right in with the sounds throughout. "Petrus Desbois" essentially sees a loop starting out with full on hostility before disintegrating over its length into the simmering pool of "Epoch." It's a suitably monolithic and metallic shine that closes the album with the same richness of texture that it started on. Quite nice, and on the always interesting Abandon Ship.