Review: Pablo Diserens – For Scarpa’s Fountains (forms of minutiae, Jul 15)

While most of the people I know in real life cringe in disgust when I express my love for what I call “gravel-in-mouth” sounds, but I think a lot of readers here will know and appreciate what I’m referring to: those gritty, finely-grained, microscopic crackles that always immerse so completely (e.g. Alice Kemp’s Fill My Body with Flowers and Rice, Yeast Culture’s IYS, Mathieu Ruhlmann & Banks Bailey’s Anáádiih). Congratulations, you are my TRUE friends. Your first order is to listen to Pablo Diserens’s For Scarpa’s Fountains, a 25-minute single track release that kicks off the tenure of Berlin newcomer imprint forms of minutiae. The piece begins with a auditory chiaroscuro trained on a single dribble of water, rushing and bubbling into granular clusters of sound in that enigmatically compelling sort of way I attempted to explain above, but Diserens soon spreads the focus out and traces that outer boundaries of their lush, well-captured soundscape with the cold, clear clangs and drones of various metal objects being struck together. Further complicating things is the disconcerting artificial voice that appears around the ten-minute mark, casting the ensuing stretch of reticence in a shadow of unsettling doom (helped along by the unpredictable bass shockwaves that occasionally explode in the lower register). This shroud remains even over the soothing nature recordings and recurrence of the original solitary water current that conclude the track; full circle, but not really.