Beginning with a monophonic blip reminiscent of a reel countdown from the old black and white films, ‘One Five Nine’ breaks Comatone and Foley’s Trigger Happy 2 straight into some very slicing-and-dicing crisp cuts, a grated mix of sampled electronic bass and treble sliced finer than deli meats. Gradually layering more choppy, stop-start beatwork into the mix with a tinge of ambiance as well, there’s a subtle Aphex Twin/Autechre vibe going on here. Analog drums placed on the Foley (AKA Alon Iiser) end of the spectrum cut right through Comatone’s (AKA Greg Seiler) fast break-beating dark techno. As someone who is purely a metal aficionado but getting into electronica, this is definitely an introduction to the field.
Kicking off with ominous sharp ambiance and sampling reminiscent of industrial/noise/hip-hop legends Dalek, ‘Granrelated Cuts’ gives the feel of one of those horror movies scenes recalling glitchy memories of torture, with distorted images of knife slashing and our protagonist strapped to a chair. Pressing through a squirmish miasma of blips, blops and button presses, the hi-hat flicking and doing its’ own thing throughout, a semi-atonal wall of calculated aural overload gives way to more brief ambiance, sort of a compressed version of dark ambient overlord Lustmord. A simple, almost hip-hop progression of beats quietly bounces, giving way to an almost math-metal aesthetic of ping-ponging clangs, doofs and whirls. It’s something you could nod your head to or stand back and wallow in, in a live setting. It’d be very amusing to watch drunks attempt to dance to, for sure! Revolving around a central rhythmic feel but in a very experimental pastiche of time signatures, this is certainly an experiment in swirling as closely to the edges of atonality as possible without sacrificing beat.
A cleverly titled play on how some people love to pronounce the word (art geeks and hipsters mainly, I find) instead of the Australianised ‘Eyyyyrm-byeants’, ‘UmbeAnts’ begins with strange record-scratching like noise, off-key chords and a tinnitus-like ringing. Playing with sickly arpeggios and static, this track paints a particularly ominous picture, the sound of being untethered to a space shuttle and floating into the void, alone. Hitting an interesting contrast between soft pad-like hits and snakey, winding cut-paste beats, there’s a duality of artificial and organic that tickles more than one emotional trigger concurrently, leading to a slightly discomforting but interesting sensation that is oddly addicting and alluring.
Backpedalling slowly over some nice ambient crisp beats, ‘Laptop Microphone’ adds a layer of reverb and wash, feeling akin to being dragged behind a submarine initially. Militaristic analog snare hits roll carefully under drones and subtle cautious off-key synth hits. Floating beneath and underwater sea of ambience but hitting a few soft sand dunes along the way, this closing track rolls and washes freely, a lighter texture punctuated by some of those off-kilter splices of sound as found in prior tracks. It’s almost as though a belt sander was taken to the edges of this project for this one and, although smooth, fresh and new in texture, there’s still a slight edge that can be felt, bumps of experimental elements that poke and prod in the mix alongside those rolling snares that return for the end.
As someone not well versed in experimental electronica at all, this is a very intriguing sample and a promising mash-up of a plethora of sounds. There is sonic density and heaviness to this release that will appease to those usually cautious to inorganic beatwork, plus the subtle drumwork of Foley adds to a sense of biomechanical liveliness.
YOU CAN GRAB YOUR COPY OF COMATONE AND FOLEY’S ‘TRIGGER HAPPY 2’ HERE