Monday, 28 January 2019

Tetsuo - The sound of Neo-Paris.

Tetsuo – Eternal Respect. – cdr – self released. – 2019.

01 Access [13’07’’]
02 Levels [10’54’’]
03 Eternal Respect [13’14’’]

Tetsuo is a new project by French artist Julien Skrobek, who is responsible for Abysse amongst many other projects. These are Hardware live-sets that he tends to favour, often in front of a small audience.

Years ago, before I moved area, I used to catch the tram home at night. I would always pass by this terraced house as I walked home from my stop. It looked perfectly normal; nice nets, clean front wall space, painted window frames, curtains and ceramic ornaments in the window. Upstairs there would always be a dim blue light in the front bedroom and a slow techno beat could always be heard at night, not much else ever accompanied it. It was never at an offensive volume; the sound could be heard slightly, travelling out of the window into the warm night air. It was beautiful, I always wanted to knock on the door and ask what was playing. Were they playing minimal Techno or making it? This went on for a few years until the beat never came back; did they move on, stop, pass away, I’ll never know? It wasn’t uncommon to have people making or playing electronic sounds in their houses in this area, there was just something alluring about this one.

I mentioned Abysse earlier, because Tetsuo treads the same noise/warped techno no man’s land. I often wonder if there are any direct contemporaries to the project. It reminds me slightly of Abysse, with a bit of subtle aggression added to the mix. It also takes me back to the noises that came out of the small house’s window. But this has slight noise and delicate wall properties that make it very interesting to me. This is a subtle juxtaposition of slow beat, distorted crackle and high-pitched feedback - it’s gentle but simmers away. The middle track uses odd repetitive laser like sounds, high pitched feedback and simmering distortion to about the maximum (or perhaps beyond) acceptable levels of repetition. The last set is just a repeated single beat that resonate over a distorted under base, the beat echoes on it and becomes the central focus whilst stuff goes off in the background. By this point the boundaries of repetition were crossed ages ago, I had to stay in the zone with the work.

What I like about this work is it is typical Skrobek work of the present day in that it’s released in tiny runs, content to be solely in his own odd thing that doesn’t really sound like anyone else. The cover photo of flats looks great and appeals to me greatly. I like what I’m hearing and truly love the wilful obscurity.

Choppy Noodles 2019. 

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