Andrew Pekler - Strings And Feedback
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Andrew Pekler
Strings And Feedback

Created mostly from small string and piano samples of work from Morton Feldman from the 1950s, Strings And Feedback is a completely different release than anything that Andrew Pekler has ever done. It's far removed from the blown-out jazz sample loop work he's done on his previous two albums under his own name and a long shot from his one-off release under the name Sad Rockets. Interestingly enough, this is a release in which the title is almost a completely apt description of the music contained within. Samples are pulled and plucked and made gooey, and very little in the way of melody even survives the process.

The opening tracks of "P'luckd" and "Localite" are both studies in tone and texture as fluttering plucks of strings wash across one another and hover in the air. The latter track plays even more with the sound, dropping deep bass hits and somewhat harsh squelches. On "Ogonjok," some plucked phrases escape through more ringing feedback, and they speed up and slow down as if they were playing through an old tape reel with a bad motor.

At times, the album seems to really hit the mark, as on the super-creepy "Mirrorise," an almost seven-minute track that blends loads of swirling string loops and single piano notes into a haunting track that sounds like it could have been peeled off an old Dario Argento horror film soundtrack. "Refusenik" works in similar ways, crushing and compressing strings into something almost unrecognizable while glitchy piano notes sound like the inner workings of a tinkertoy machine that's slowly falling to pieces.

Unfortunately, while there are some neat ideas explored on Strings And Feedback, it just never quite coalesces into something that makes for a compelling overall listen. After awhile, all the pushed tones and filtered strings just sort of blend together into one large, shapeless mass, and the lack of overall dynamics on the release doesn't do it any favors. Strings And Feedback is Pekler's least-interesting album yet.

rating: 5.510
Aaron Coleman 2005-09-25 00:00:00