Yen Pox & Troum - Mnemonic Induction [Transgredient - 2015]
Brooding, droning, dark ambient legends Yen Pox & Troum see a long awaited, re-mastered re-issue of their 2002 collaborative release, Mnemonic Induction. Coming to us on an 8-panel digipack from Transgredient Records, this lush, sonic dreamscape captures two brilliant acts working together from 1996-2002. With only four tracks making up this 63+ opus, one is invited into a churning, slowly moving, skillfully evolving LP that will allow the mind to roam and explore previously undiscovered caverns of the subconscious. Opening with a distant rumbling like the heaving Earth, Mnemonic Induction slowly rises like the sun on a far off horizon. Subtle, echoed, percussive hits add a natural, primitive undertone to the airy, open, higher drones as the gas giant moves further skyward. Interestingly, this rise leads to a sudden decent into subterranean caverns where the glint of the sun won't be seen and the warmth of its rays won't be felt. Time is spent exploring this vast expanse, and the lack of borders allows the mind to drift in healthy ways. This exploration works well as the second track begins with a very meditative drone safely in the distance. Shimmering like light on a pond, near chant drones add a depth that reinforces the mystic, inner mind vibe. Floating through space and time on breathing waves of sound, the midpoint of the album has revealed quite a journey already. Taking a break from the mental excursion, the physicality of track three reminds the listener that they're being shown the sights of an alien land by two masters. The interplay of the layers creates sonic curtains that writhe and crash into each other like waves of earth in a quake. Slowly lumbering, but staying their course, these layers expose more of their inner qualities as the song progresses. Joined by spectral pterosaur highs, the full spectrum is on display, and it's quite a treat for the ears. Closing out Mnemonic Induction is the descent into the deepest, most cavernous track yet. Describing a breathtaking space with only subtle drones is an impressive feat. Playful sounds come forward like rustic windchimes being shaken by an unseen wind that slowly overtakes the listener and knocks him further into the unknown.
Yen Pox & Troum are two very skilled artists that create lush, sonic landscapes, so it's no wonder their collaboration is wonderfully vivid. Allowing the mind to drift on its own journey seems to be the M.O. on Mnemonic Induction, and the respite from the drudgery of modern life is welcomed. This re-mastered re-issue should please any discerning fan of dark ambient, if not just for the beauty contained, but the excellent job in which Transgredient has done with it.Paul Casey