Slub | 20010203_(folded)/20010307_(folded)

Fodder/Fällt | MP3/PDF

Fällt's 'DIY Digital Audio™' sub-label Fodder (releases are "'packaged' using MP3 and PDF technologies for pure digital distribution" debuted last year with two under-your-skin-infectious tracks by mysterious Australian artist Ted Sulkowicz. The somewhat more wayward follow-up is by Slub and consists of two tracks plus downloadable CD pixelwork by Fällt designers' Fehler.

Slub are Alex McLean and Ade Ward, a duo who, on the evidence of this release, appear to combine a sense of the aesthetic possibilities of human-readable program code and (computer-generated) ASCII art with the chance possibilities of real-time interactive computer music. It might be fair to point out some similarities in this regard to cd_slopper, but where cd_slopper's music often does little to disguise its origins as data-as-audio Slub's sounds are less easily pigeonholed, often sounding distinctly 'acoustic', whatever their origins.

The two tracks comprising this release are edited from much longer versions, one of which is available for download at Slub's website. The shortened version of this is the Fodder A side; a track which doesn't let go once it's taken hold. It kicks off with clacking rhythms, like castanets or spoons, which are gradually displaced (but not obliterated) by a pervasive whine which steadily increases in intensity - threatening neighbourly relations if not speakers and eardrums - upping anxiety levels until sound eventually cancels out sound.

The elasticated B side is possibly the more notable of the two. Continually shifting under foot, it lurches from queasy synth riffs to percussive splattershots (all snipety-snip and nervous tic), ending up this time wrapped in ball of scrumpling tinfoil.

Freeform human-computer interaction.

[GM]



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