Rosy Parlane - Jessamine [Touch - 2006]Rosy Parlane (male) is a New Zealand based musician who specialises in dense complex electro-acoustic music based around unrecognisable loops, field recordings, guitars and other instruments. Iris his previous release on Touch received considerable praise, including surprisingly from Red hot chilli peppers guitarist John Frusciante. His second release on Touch is another tour de force of contemporary drone and electro-acoustics.
The three long tracks have no titles but are far more distinct than this lack of separation would suggest. The first track grows on a wave of deep metallic drone that could be conjured up from bowed metal or manipulated string glissandi. There appears to be field recordings that could be from a forest or country setting. There are no discernable instruments as such, only a thick miasma of noise out of which strange otherworldly sounds emanate. It fills the room and holds the attention far more than most music of this kind.
The second track begins with a tense high pitched drone that carries more dread than the earthy warmth of the first piece. Harsh crackly digital noise flitters around the edges as a semi orchestral wave of noise swells up amid distant unfathomable loops and shards of incidental sound. Tetuzi Akiyama guests on this track, providing resonator guitar with Samurai sword and contact microphones. I have no idea what that would sound like but the dense metallic drone and string like hum that invades the track at about six minutes could be it. The thickness of the sound reaches a breaking point at just past ten minutes at which point the whole thing collapses on a sharp bed of saw like digital noise. This falls away as quickly as it began leaving an empty minimal undulation and rustling.
The final track revisits some of the warmth and flow of the first tracks opening few minutes. Vinyl like scratches and pleasant little electric flares and twitches, like insects crawl across my speakers. We are in the forest again. However the tension from the second track is here also and builds over the first ten minutes with ever more oppressive guitar like drone and thick swaths of digital noise. By the midway point the track has ascended to a vast wall of noise that Merzbow would be proud of. This continues unabated for the remainder of the track before falling away leaving only the stumps of the forest behind.
The power and emotion conveyed in Rosy Parlanes music is a rare gem in the field of drone and electro-acoustic music, and is one that warrants significant investigation by all fans of said genres.Duncan Simpson