Ian Andrews: Delayed Inaudible P2

When cloudy whorls of industrial noise rapidly supplant a speaker's dryly intoned “sustained resonant tone,” one might expect it to be the last 'natural' sound heard on Delayed Inaudible P2. In fact, in a certain sense the album couldn't be any more natural, given that its sonic arsenal derives from—shades of Matmos—recordings of human heartbeats. While song titles like “Aortic Pulse” and “Tricuspid Leak” reveal as much, whatever explicit bodily connections these ten pieces possess is largely transformed by Andrews' surgical approach (even if a pulsing heartbeat like the one anchoring “Patent Ductus Arteriosis” forms the core of many).

Andrews, a Sydney-based composer who has also recorded under the aliases Hypnoblob and Disco Stu, generates a healthy amount of stylistic variety despite the self-imposed restriction. Much of it sounds like the reverberant, trance-inducing style of classic Chain Reaction but pushed into more drone-like, ambient zones. A given track finds machine loops of muffled beats and prickly crackle incrementally evolving, with pulsating washes rising to the surface and then retiring to cede their place to other morphing layers. While the effect is subtle and at times mesmerizing, these amelodic pieces can sometimes sound a bit static, akin to sonic sculptures that mutate ever-so-glacially. Having said that, there's no denying the rich field of hazy smears, throbbing pulses, and convulsive muffles Andrews cultivates. The ten-minute “Pulmonary,” for example, unfurls hypnotically with cavernous crackle and gouges forming an intense looping base for the prickly electrical patterns cycling overhead. By track's end, all manner of cycling detritus—dubby clatter, gravelly machine grinding, faint whistles and ringings—are heard bubbling to the surface, and Andrews even manages to weave an almost skanky rhythm through the percussive showers of “Expiration.” While perhaps not as captivating as last year's Fällt release Ceremonial, Delayed Inaudible P2 showcases Andrews' deft hand at sculpting fractured textures and subterranean rhythms using minimal means.

May 2005