Review: Crash at Every Speed – Departure Crash (Breaching Static, Apr 2)

Departure Crash has its fair share of abrasive, annihilating stagnant noise, but for the most part the five pieces that comprise this new CD from one of my favorite of Richard Ramirez’s literally countless aliases have such potent staying power because of how fully and comprehensively immobilizing their presence is. The harsh static of the first untitled track is expectedly loud and punishing right out of the gate, one soon becomes aware of a subtle but palpable reticence at its base (it may be easier to pick this out if you’ve previously heard Ramirez’s other wall-based projects, many of which do not share this quality), a meditative current that transforms the listening experience from appreciative cowering and grimacing to contemplative introspection. This structure continues throughout the contents of the disc despite the ensuing tracks’ sonic diversity; the second sluggishly materializes into and dissipates out of its soot cloud–like form, while the fourth rides an overblown but somehow nonintrusive rumble of distorted crunch. Personally I could do without the news samples that crop up in the final two sections, which greatly reduce the enjoyment factor of the fourth and infuriatingly delay the actual noise part of the fifth, but the approach taken in constructing these walls is unique and successful enough that I can mostly overlook those missteps. Ever wonder what that thick, uncomfortable silence following those graphic car crash videos you had to watch in secondary school would sound like run through a pedal chain? Now you know.

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