Review: Paul Nataraj – You Sound Like a Broken Record (self-released, Apr 8)

It doesn’t take a lot of deductive reasoning to gather that You Sound Like a Broken Record was made by manipulating and sampling recorded material. But sound artist Paul Nataraj has a much more unique methodology behind the music on this album. He interviewed fourteen volunteers, who each brought a single LP that was personally significant to them. Nataraj then meticulously carved the participant’s stories onto the records they donated, poetically immortalizing them onto the medium which made the impact in the first place. The carved records were then used in the fourteen compositions found on the album. Predictably, the source material is oftentimes heavily obscured, but there are also times when each LP’s original contents surface amidst Nataraj’s abstract cut-up collages, a unique coexistence of old and new. As someone who has a very personal relationship with the music I listen to, You Sound Like a Broken Record has a concept that hits close to home, and I’m sure many of you share this with me.

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