Vital

A review of Echoic from Vital Weekly:

Here’s someone who calls himself a ‘former teenage metalhead’ who likes musical extremity, but is not your standard noise boy. He is from Newcastle and lives in London where he mainly does sound work, installations and performances exploring acoustic phenomena and in 2012 he released ‘Begin Anywhere’ (see Vital Weekly 820), also on Runningonair Music. Now we have some more information, also on the music itself. Apparently the six pieces here originate from a box of old cassettes, which he still drags around, and now found a place in his set-up, which is ‘a jumble of digital filters and delays suddenly became my laptop’s echoic memory’, with credit to Ulric Neisser, ‘a significant figure in the development of cognitive science, echoic memory, or auditory sensory memory, is part of the short-term memory and refers to the way the brain can take exact copy of what is heard and hold it for very short periods, roughly two to four seconds’. These six pieces are densely layered pieces of sound – probably similar sounds overlaying and intertwining each other and creating hybrid life forms of insectoid sounds. Crawling over each other, we look through a microscope and see so much more. It’s, in other words, the work of ambient and drone, all of the more darker nature. As such Stamper may not offer something that is very new or very innovative, but I must admit I quite enjoyed these works. It was highly atmospheric, even a bit crude and raw (in ‘Out’), dark, greyish and a nice tune for a winter’s evening. My favourites where ‘Sea’ and ‘Absent’, for they seemed to have a slightly more lighter tone. If you like drones, ambient and a bit of shoegazing, then I am sure you will find pleasure in this as well. (FdW)

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