Hjem is a relatively short (1 track, 28 minute) collaboration between Mikroton label founder Kurt Liedwart and his analogue synths and electronics, Andrey Popovskiy’s work with “quiet and miniature” sound generated by “violin and objects” (the domestic objects ranging from baking trays to electric toothbrushes), and founder of the SOFA label Martin Text playing tuba. The tuba notes roll absurdly long and deep, while the electronics and acoustic elements gradually attack and decay over the top. The result is a slowly transmogrifying drone with a tone that’s part pure, part industrial, sometimes smooth, sometimes a touch muddy.
You wouldn’t think that a tuba would be a good bedfellow for “miniature sounds” but a careful and judicious bit of mixing balances things out fairly nicely. The tuba dominates for the first third, but the electronic hums gradually supplant it at the piece’s core as it progresses. These analogue tones slowly get a bit more pulse-driven and rapidly undulating for a while before plateauing into a steady and simple drone that draws us to a close.
It’s a succinct and tightly-arranged short work with a very crisp outlook, and worthy of addition to the collection of anyone with a penchant for rich avantgarde drone.