Music Reviews

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Artist: Toshimaru Nakamura
Title: Re-Verbed (No-Input Mixing Board 9)
Format: 12" vinyl + Download
Label: Room40
If like me you’re unfamiliar with Nakamura’s long-standing series of audio works derived purely from the sound of a mixing board containing no inputs, you might have expected emptiness, ambience and space- gentle feedback, electrical hum, and so on. What you actually get, as a clickbait writer could say, might surprise you.

This is raw, deep analogue electronica, built from patterns, tuned noise, distortion, feedback, decay and delay. Of the pieces, with no names only numbers from 51 to 58 inclusive, some are quite in-your-face, raw distorted oscillations firmly at the front- 55 being decidedly proto-techno in its structure, for example, and 57 being a particular harsh noise wall at times. Others are washier, more spacious affairs, like 53 and the oddly content-sounding final track 58.

There’s not a single drum sound to be heard, but some of the works feel like they’re itching to be remixed into heavy EBM or drum and bass- 51 has a strong rhythm and ingredients that could be baked into a serious dark dancefloor tune. Others, like 52, are more freeform and feel more akin to old Radiophonic Workshop experiments.

To a novice like me it’s unclear how the breadth of these sounds could all have been sourced from a single mixing board (“where does the sound come from?” sounds almost philosophical) and it certainly feels like there’s a lot of post-production and/or planning that’s gone into making some very interesting, unique-sounding and diverse electronica.



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