"Phase Plane Cake Decorator", the new album of rough and thorny drone music by Ophibre (aka artist and audio engineer Benjamin Rossignol), consists of four pieces of sensual, lysergic stasis that seep into one’s subconscious like a half-remembered dream. Each piece burrows deep into a single sound-world; the centerpiece track from which the album gets its title kicks things off with monolithic sheets of oscillator fuzz and sand-blasted guitar squall that extend outward in a spiraling uniform-density torrent. When the hailstorm subsides, Ophibre scales back the aggression while maintaining an implacably raw tension… synth and feedback loops throb through the next three pieces, seeming to conceal jagged edges beneath their ambient/minimal exterior.
Rossingol explains what he’s up to: “Several years ago, I was participating in medical studies to get by. One such study involved an MRI. At some point while I was in the chamber of the machine, I couldn’t tell if I was hallucinating or not, but I started hearing other sounds above the magnet… sounds that complimented the terrifically terrible drone of the big magnet. All the while, I was not sure if I was composing these experiences, or if they were actually happening around me. I wanted to try mimic that experience of trance, of filling in some form of minimal drowsy terror with one’s own tones and noises.”
“Monolithic rumble music… on the surface it seems not a lot is happening, but deep down, behind the cracks, things move solemnly ahead, with some variations like insects crawling all over the space.” – Vital Weekly
“(This album) draws from Rossignol’s experience with an MRI machine while he was participating in a few medical studies to help pay the bills. The first track is a screeching rasp of magnetic noise, particle accelerated vibration, and hurricane fury that’s well-suited to the likes of Birchville Cat Motel and Hototogisu; but after this 15 minute blast of noise, Ophibre’s sublime, yet gritty dronescaping takes over with mirrored tones and hazy echoes that appear like the tracers from a bad drug reaction, flickering upon his murky immersions.” – Aquarius Records
“Rossignol builds all his own devices and, much like fellow Intransitive artist Nerve Net Noise, sees them as a form of personal expression. Also like Nerve Net Noise, this is synth music that is as far away from Kosmische as you can get. Grimy, distorted textures dominate, sounding more like an overdriven guitar or organ played with exceptional control than any classic synthesizer module. Rossignol’s pieces are teeming with detail and minute changes, full of activity but clear and balanced.” – Paris Transatlantic
released September 1, 2010
Originally published as a CDR in a limited edition of 100 copies.
all rights reserved