For those who did not make it to Houston's annual Eyes Behind the Wall Fest, chances are you missed out on a ton of new and old static artists who played 10 minute sets of almost unchanging wall noise. Not only did everyone have completely different setups and different ways of making HNW, but everyone had their own compositions that separated from others, which was my immediate concern (everyone sounding the same).
Anyway, before the fest came to a close, I was handed his new tape by the very nice man named J. Tallis (A Young Innocent Throat Cutter) and we exchanged kind words and ended up doing a trade. The tape was actually the only one I was interested in receiving that night so it was much more rewarding to be handed one!
Purity Ball - Rope Of Flesh (Dead Audio Tapes) has a very minimal cover which shows a woman screaming in pain. I wonder where the picture originated from. There is an inner flap with credits that show all of the song titles and what not while completely covering a white cassette tape with the labels "1" and "2" differentiating the sides.
Side A starts with a woman crying that seems to have come from an old horror film. That is until a man says "Hannah~" and the woman screams and the wall of sound begins and is also the first track name of this side. This project's compositions from the start are marginally different from others. The static is not only low, but Tallis goes with a much more hollow sound than a thick bass-laden one. This has the sound of a deep struggle for sure. The texture changes are not patient at all and it keeps the listener involved with what is coming out of the speakers until the track comes to an abrupt end.
More hollow wall sinks in to what appears to be track two of this installment, "In the Basement". This has a lot more high-pitched frequencies than the first track and sounds exactly like an empty basement with noise would sound. Sounds from the acoustics in the room bouncing back and forth and creating its own sound. To me that is the beauty of wall noise.
"Asphalt Bride" drops in with more bassy wall noise and in an almost slow paced pitch. This reminds me of driving alone with no radio on and all you can hear is the low hiss of the tread of tired riding on pavement for a long drive to somewhere when I would drive long distances to work construction.
Side B starts the listener off with "Witness" which begins with a brief sound clip and some super minimal static. This is very low and murky, but almost brittle. I an digging this fragile crackle.
"VVV" is the next track and the textures give off a field recording vibe and, again, a wall of sound much different that the tracks before.
"The Preacher's Knives" is a very atmospheric track to say anything. I had to crank the volume up and let the airy vibe fill the room. This track comes off very intimate for me. Perhaps it is due to me listening to this tape alone.
The final track "Gutter Life" comes out like a haunting sound coming from something like a wind tunnel and you're all alone and you feel like you're being followed. Definitely one of the more stress-inducing tracks.
Honestly, HNW doesn't appeal to me much. Before you diehards crucify me, I say this only because HNW is the most common submission i receive in my mailbox (at one point was two packages a day) and I am seriously burned out on it and with everything sounding the same, the piles and piles of submissions are still awaiting to be reviewed.
Fortunately for this tape and the wall fest, I feel completely revitalized by this genre and am excited to delve back into static experimentation.
Thanks Mr. Tallis. This is easily the best wall release I own.
I recommend this to anyone into wall noise or experimentation.
The only site I can think of that would have this would either be www.deadaudiotapes.blogspot.com or maybe discogs.