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Sonologyst - Silencers [Cold Spring - 2018]

Italian sound artist Sonologyst makes his Cold Spring debut with Silencers, a sonic journey touching on the "silencers" of conspiracy theory. Using bleak sounds to further the blackness of these sub rosa programs, Sonologyst crafts an eerie atmosphere that mimics a victim's solitude. Alongside this bleakness are high, alien notes that reinforce the ongoing contact with visitors, be it real or perceived.

Slowly warbling into consciousness, Silencers hits the listeners like a message from an interstellar intelligence. Distant, soft, and inviting, this cosmic communique opens up a new world for the recipient. The other worldliness of "Singularity" nicely flows into the more Earthlike atmosphere of "Monotape." What one might hear on a reconfigured recording from a radio telescope, the communication has come to land. This communication seems to announce the visitors, which have landed in the forest, and emerge from their craft in "Nocturnal Anomalies." While "Nocturnal" has more of a natural feel to the drones and layers, "Deep Black Programs" feels artificial, and is a nice juxtaposition to the preceding track. Whether or not the MIBs are aliens, too, they definitely stand in contrast to the visitors that many Earthlings have claimed to have contact with. High pitched, reverbed wails mark the appearance of the "Silencers." Combing through sites and witnesses, looking for clues, these silencers will fight tirelessly to cover up the fact that we're not alone. Not only that, but how easy it is for others to enter our space. Upping the noise ante a bit, "Close Circuit" feels like an interrogation. Low oscillations host wriggling, penetrating violin strings in an effort to coax the listener (witness) into submission. Following this, "Anamorfismo" reduces the volume in the album's longest, most minimal track. Sonically returning to the distant sounds of the opening, "Infrared" reinforces the sparseness. Bringing forth samples from JFK and his space program, "Secret Societies. The Kennedy Speech" makes an attempt to add historical credence to Sonologyst's album. This is followed by a soft closer, "NASA Classified Tapes," and wraps up the album nicely.

Sonologyst's first on Cold Spring, Silencers, is an interesting take on the alien conspiracy tale. While on the whole, the tracks feel pretty similar, and a little bloated on run time, Silencers is a pretty fun album with an open concept for interpretation.

Rating: 3 out of 5Rating: 3 out of 5Rating: 3 out of 5Rating: 3 out of 5Rating: 3 out of 5

Paul Casey
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