Alo´s Yang - MLMC Live at Punctum [901 Editions - 2021]
MLMC Live at Punctum is a four-track release that sits somewhere between electro-acoustic mood scaping, manipulated water/ ice sound art, and whistling-to-waving drone craft. The release appears on Italians 901 editions- appearing as either a CD or digital download, I am reviewing the CD version.
The CD comes presented a six-panel mini card gatefold- this features on its outside a solid sky blue backdrop, with texts and minimal abstract ice like shapes in white. And on the inside, we get a largely plain and white layout with subtle blue inked like ice shapes on the last panel. So a nicely arty bit of packaging Roger Batty
Aloïs Yang is a media artist, performer and experimental musician. He was born in France, but then raised in Taiwan, and now moves between Berlin and Prague. He produces work that finds him looking at the links between people, sound, and the external world. His output utilizers both scientific focus and human imperfection as a way of understanding nature, and investigating the concepts of time and space on both “outer” physical world and “inner” metaphysical form. He has seemingly been active since around 2015, and this is his first physical release- after a handful of digital releases.
This release is based around a one-day installation Aloïs created at Punctum in Prague in 2018. The focus/ theme of this installation was to show how a tiny sonic event – on this occasion a drop of water, or a sound of cracking and melting ice – can create feedback loops that can be used to build sound works around. I guess you can see connects with the likes of Aube, and Carsten Nicolai more stripped/ installation work, though Aloïs work is a lot looser/ abstract than either of those two sound makers.
The first track here is “MLMC Live At Punctum (Concert Edit)”, and this is the longer of the four tracks at twenty-one minutes. It starts out relatively active, with a fairly formally and almost glitching blend of sampled and sped up drip, drops, and splashes- with stabbing lines of mid to high pitch tone coming into play. As the track progresses the even and focused flow dispenses, as we drift through a sound world of lose-to-echoing drips, waving tone hits and reverbs, slowly slicing-to-hover pitch slices, petering out textural ripples, etc.
Moving on we have nearing eight and a half minutes of "MLMC At Punctum (Studio Take 1)". Here we find a more active, detailed, and busy sonic structure of knocks, rings ‘n’ tolls, slices, dragging simmers, and pitch hovers. You can still identify the drip tones that come from the original recordings, but they are largely morphed and bent out of shape.
Next, we have “MLMC At Punctum (Studio Take 2)”, and this just over five-minute track pushes more towards busy sound-making- with shifting layers of stretched vibe like tones, grinding lines of textural pop, shards of drone harmonics, and warbling electro play. The album is finished off with the eight and a half minutes of “MLMC Part 0. (Recorded at SSI 4DSOUND System)"- and here we find a more even and untouched mix of waving drone matter and dripping field recordings- which create a more haunting, and uneasily alien soundscape.
MLMC Live at Punctum is very much of a release that is about the processing and altering of water-based field recordings- charting how much or how little can be done with this. As a four-track release, it feels slightly indulgent and baggy, though each track has its interesting facets- so as a result, I feel maybe if the tracks had been reduced more/ and or mixed together it may have been a more evenly rewarding album. Through with that said, if you do enjoy water-based sound craft- I’d say you need to at least sample what's on offer here, as it may click more fully with you.