I knew to expect a workmanlike performance from Andy Ortmann (Panicsville), and the best rush of this split LP comes courtesy Ben Vida. The bottom falls out and we’re whipped through a salvia-sound waterslide into a technicolor heaven-hell with chimes greeting us at the bottom. It’s a thrilling plunge, albeit a temporary one. Soon slithering clouds of electricity and liquid stutter-steps on chaos pads drop on the canvas, a steady rhythm snaking its way through then disappearing like a character in a dream. THEN we take the plunge again and we’re at lightspeed in a greased toboggan. WHEW! Holy SHIT!
Vida’s side is louder, more bombastic than that of Ortmann. At times, specifically the instance described above, his full-throttle style provides a rush you can only get when you jump out of the plane and toss the parachute to the side. At others, a toned-down, three-layer mulch of static hushes the rush. Halfway through his side a thrilling push-pull sequence gives way to a more random approach that, short of autopilot mode, seems to cry out for the listener’s attention more than it needs to before a more well-considered cosmic drone cushions a ping-ponging exercise as much hair_loss/Metasplice as it is Eric Copeland/Black Dice. A tad busy, a tad sloppy, still a sick side from a seismic slop-hound with a bad audio attitude. This fish is delish!
Ortmann, what can I say? The man’s done his homework, and we all get to share in the wealth of it. All five-odd cuts here are worth investigating if the mod-synth/kosmiche thing got hold of you (perhaps you heard of it?), in particular because this fellow’s been around awhile and knows what to do with his riches. It never seems as if there’s too much activity, nor too little, and the swirls of sweet melody and rhythmic permutations. One of these cuts appeared on that compilation I “put out” (as in, not much hype, whereas people still order that Tonstartssbandht tape a few times a month), and it gets new life on vinyl, surging with robotic precision and all-too-human abandon.
The fifth movement will stay with you the longest. It’s got a nasty, severe undertone to it that underpins the cold, clammy programming overtop perfectly. Class act.
Simple paste-on art completes the deal. Not sure when this came out; who cares?