Shedding - What God Doesnt Bless, You Wont Love; What You Dont Love, the Child Wont Know
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Shedding
What God Doesnt Bless, You Wont Love; What You Dont Love, the Child Wont Know

Housed in absolutely stunning packaging (which has become par for the course with the Home Tapes label), What God Doesnt Bless, You Wont Love; What You Dont Love, the Child Wont Know is the second release for the Louisville, Kentucky-based artist Connor Bell. Roughly inspired by the flute compositions of Eric Dolphy and bird sounds, the release finds Bell creating long, droning pieces that blend playing instrumentation with glacial drifts of processed sound and field recordings. The end result is a release that's much darker than one might expect given the muses for his work.

The forty-minute release is cut into three longer tracks, and all of them blend together into a somewhat murky, creeping wash that starts in almost microsound territory before getting louder in the middle and finally dissolving at the end again. "GB" opens the effort and at just under six minutes is the shortest piece on the album. Starting with deep hits of percussion and the brush of cymbals, the track develops uneasily with ringing drones, moan-like samples, and overlapping layers of curling, filtered horns that all seem to fall into a chasm-like hole at the ending.

"W" follows, and is easily the most active, again using layers of clarinet as the main (and only real) melodic element. A little ways in, though, some repetitive drumming and chugging bass enters the mix and pushes things forward in a drugged-out, creepy way that make the back and forth clarinet calls sound like some sort of pre-fight song and dance for dominance.

"YDK" takes up nearly half the album running length and shuffles off down the rabbit hole even further as mercurial samples of jazz sputter though a sonic molasses in a way that calls to mind everyone from Philip Jeck to Nurse With Wound. Sounding somewhat like the more evil twin to an artist like Greg Davis or Mountains, Shedding has created an uneasy release that's excellent and involving at times, yet rather frustrating in others. Drone jazz? Quite possibly.

rating: 6.510
Aaron Coleman 2006-12-14 21:44:24