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 Review archive:  # a b c d e f g h i j k l m n o p q r s t u v w x y z

Geisst - Unstable Spirits [Altar Of Waste - 2017]

Here’s a release that brings together two of my favourite things- static noise/walled noise, and the supernatural. Unstable Spirits was the debut release from this project, and originally appeared in a three CDR set on Altar Of Waste- sadly this had now sold-out, and the release is just available now as a digital download from Geisst bandcamp.

Behind  Geisst is Seattle Washington based  noise maker/ experimental artists Peter Keller, whose know for projects such as  Condo Horro, Bacillus, Dirac Sea, PTRKLLR, & Unser Verhängnis. The theme/ idea behind Geisst is that all  it’s are untouched by (alive) human hands, with the no input walled noise left to sway ‘n’ shift on it’s own, as Keller captures it in his creepy basement. The idea/ theme with the release may make one worry that it  could lack focus & depth of wall-craft, but there are still perimeters are set- so the tracks are still consist bits of wall-ish noise craft- it’s just buffeted, battered, and swayed slightly- all to create a fairly distinctive & original sound.

The release features ten tracks, and these are simply named Spirit 1-though to-10. And each of these run between nine & thirty one minutes in length. I won't  go through and describe each of the ten tracks here, as I feel that would rather take out the element of surprise. But instead I’ll select a few of my favourite moments. So first of these is "Spirit Three"- this just over thirteen & a half minute track brings together a skittering & grainy jitter, with a deeper constantly ripping & swirling layer. Together these create a  wall that feels both crude-yet-moody unsettling in it’s feel. "Spirit Five" comes in at just under the eighteen minute mark- it opens been built around more ringing & penetrating high pitched textures, these are fed out into a line shrill sourness.  Fairly soon a slow & even cracke is added to the higher pitched flow, and this adds  a nice feeling of eeriness the track- as times this crackle gets quite feasting & dense in it’s grim pelting patter, at others a little more pared back.

"Spirit Eights" nearing eighteen minutes is a blend juddering ‘n’ loosely churning mid ranged, which is weaved by this looped ‘n’ creepy chirping texture, and underfed by distant yet constant hissing haze . Together these textures create a great feeling of both manic tension, seared unease, and a very tangible feeling of constantly feasting dread.  "Spirit Ten" is another one of the longer ‘walls’ here at the twenty five & forty one second mark- this again is another great blend of tension & unsettling mood. The ambient wall is a  blend of buzzing ‘n’ purring mids, with thinner & wintry wind like sweeps ‘n’ simmers- together these create a very tangible atmosphere, which is somewhere between electro drone taunt-ness & bleak hypnotics.

So Unstable Spirits is certainly one of the more distinctive releases to appear  from out of the wall scene in 2017. With each of the ten tracks offering up fairly different sounding selection of textures, which perfectly blend together taut tension with unsettling/haunting mood. It’s just a pity the physical release is gone, oh well maybe it will reappear again- as AOW has done similar in the past, with other releases.

Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5Rating: 4 out of 5

Roger Batty
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