Yan Jun - Time Killer [Hard Return - 2022]
Yan Jun, is a conceptual sound artist and poet hailing from Beijing, China. He works in experimental and improvised music utilizing noise, field recordings and the human body as his raw materials. Interestingly enough, with his ongoing project Sleepings, where he’s asking participants to record themselves slumbering. Time Killer, Jun latest album, is connected to the said project as the artist sums its focus as “part of a continual interest of making myself (and others) sleep or be more sober”!
Time Killer is a three-track album, created under a strict, feedback-based minimal approach, where earphones, EQ pedals, a digital recorder and the actual sound of the room are employed and materialized in the form of a constant stream of oscillating frequency waves- mostly from the low end of the sonic spectrum. By definition, feedback occurs when a microphone picks up sound from a speaker while that speaker is playing sound from the microphone, thus creating a loop. The same procedure is utilized: narrative and evolving frequencies, rhythmic, spanning in all extremities of the frequency margin.
The dominant aesthetic herein is vibrantly dark. The sound is illuminated as such and saturated with punch, fatness and crunchiness combined as a creamy sonic material blasting its way through; with almost silence but also with utmost force. The album is escalating by both smaller sonic details and barbaric feedback that hums with destruction. Obviously, this is not the ripping feedback found in power electronics, it is deep, with high frequencies almost non-existent, while the bass is in orgasm and had me in awe!
Being a conceptual and abstract work, Time Killer demands time investment, focusing, comprehension and (I might say) determination, in order to fully appreciate all its qualities. It is not an easy album, it is vastly introverted and deeply personal as the sleeping experience is and furthermore, as meditative and electronically ritualistic, as it can go. For some reason, the work of Jackson Pollock came to mind but is just one of my interpretations of Time Killer. A fully functional meditational work and at the same time, a fully developed work of sound art with significant bodily side effects; I mean this literally.
Sound and body relation. Beyond any concept, beyond any artistic ideas, Time Killer has strong psychodynamics throughout, apparent from the very beginning and in a mind-blowing way. The frequency bombardment and its penetrative aspects play a pivotal role in the magnitude of the album's overall experience. That crossover where sound is anticipated with the whole body, not just the ears, where the experience goes beyond any sonic boundaries, where one is reaching a transcendental and overwhelming state of mind!. To acquire the beautiful 4-pannel digipak CD drop by here Karl Grümpe