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SASTE004 is the fourth release in the Stellate Series: sounds gathered from the experimental frontiers and outer edges of electronic music. For each Stellate Series release two tracks are created by four different producers. Collected together here are eight tracks from the periphery of electronic music.
Stellate 4 brings together the visions of L.B. Dub Corp, Dscrd, Sendai and James Ruskin. The tracks stem from the most disparate sources and are products of incomparable processes, yet, all four outfits have created music brimming with questions about spatial relationships. The eight tracks emerge as part-soundscapes, part-structures with which to explore our darkest selves and our deepest questioning.
L.B. Dub Corp opens Stellate 4 with ‘Choctaw Dub’. With this reference to the Choctaw Native Americans the track situates itself at the point of friction between ancient wisdom and the realities of modern western living. Within this enormous cavern ‘Choctaw Dub’ commands a huge architectural space where heady, ecstatic noise whirls in the distance, syncopated claves chatter in the mid-ground and strange echoes reverberate in between. Shifting the frame of reference ‘Indulgent Dub’ is a futuristic moonscape. Dusty beds and pads are interrupted by clangs that tone out of turn, but not out of place.
French five piece Dscrd put their many hands to work and ‘Aedificare’ and ‘Interitum’ emerged. Constructed with great arcs and drops that lead to sonic corridors ‘Aedificare’, the Latin for building, establishing, creating, is the perfect title. Process is also highlighted with ‘Interitum’ where repeating phrases lead the listener through odd structures and along paths that are at once familiar and undefined. Skilfully sound-designed it is just as easy to get lost in ‘Interitum’s details as it is in the grandiose scope of what Dscrd have created.
From ten hands to four: Sendai is the collaboration between Peter Van Hoesen and Yves De Mey. ‘Without the Written Word (Part 1)’ and ‘Without the Written Word (Part 2)’ are fortified with bone-chilling menace. Having dispensed with the written word, all other forms of communication step into the fore: you can’t consult your notes anymore, they’re gone. What you’ve got are your ears and what they get is a vicious assault. Part 1 is an angular meeting of high-pitched shrills and synthesized screeches. Part 2 is a slab of drone slashed with noise and gnarling bass.
James Ruskin takes care of the final side of Stellate 4 and contrasts the brutalist structures created by Sendai with tracks that channel wide-open spaces and glacial planes. ‘Cabin Fever’ is created with a very refined palette of compressed sounds that unfold with slow precision. ‘Cast Down’ closes the record on a sumptuous note. ‘Cast Down’ is composed of stunning melodies are looped and layered. This is a track to get lost it. It’s a track to dance alone to. It’s a seven minute journey that, by the very same token, is mournful and utterly ecstatic.
The Stellate Series is boxed exquisitely in a round metallic tin which contains two clear 10” vinyls. Each vinyl is separated by a typographic print on recycled paper. The Stellate releases also contain a hand-numbered artwork inlay by Oblivious Artefacts. The entire artwork comprises of four parts which are divided between Stellate 1 through to Stellate 4. Additionally each release contains a unique card with a download code. Each Stellate release is a strictly limited edition of 300. The entire Stellate Series was craftily mastered in Berlin by Artefacts Mastering.
Words: Clare Molloy
Release/catalogue number: SASTE004
Release date: Dec 6, 2012