Various Artists – Eamon The Destroyer – ‘A Small Blue Car – Re-made/Re-modelled’

Uncategorized November 10, 2022

Various Artists – Eamon The Destroyer – ‘A Small Blue Car – Re-made/Re-modelled’

Bearsuit is a close-knit community of musicologists and risk-takers who love to push the envelope beyond traditional musical forms – in other words, they love to take the piss.

And like 4AD’s collaborative in-house project This Mortal Coil, Bearsuit artists often contribute to each other’s releases with several artists issuing albums under various pseudonyms. Their latest release features 16 artists (some in the Bearsuit stable, others friends and friends of friends in bands the label admires) reinterpreting Eamon The Destroyer’s 2021 release, ‘A Small Blue Car.’ Some artists were so impressed with the original that they insisted on remaking tracks that other friends and fans already tackled, so we got several versions of the same song. It makes for a very interesting and, as always with Bearsuit, an occasional challenging listen.

The trip begins with Japan’s Like This Parade applying their glitchy hiccups to ‘Nothing Like Anything,’ which Senji Niban revisits in a more expansive, dreamy take via his preferred Renoise workstation, both retaining the narrative structure of the story/song. Eamon’s harmonium-driven ‘Tomahawk Den’ is given an eerie overhaul courtesy France’s Société Cantine (Cy Bianne) resulting in robotic conversations between Cy and Eamon with numerous effects tossed in to make it seem like we’re listening to half a dozen different songs at once, which is obviously M. Bianne’s intent! Bearsuit’s own electronic experimentalist Andrei Rikichi adds a rough sheen to ‘The Conjuring Stops,’ originally a soothing, throbbing electronic loop. Playing both simultaneously for maximum headswirling effect!

‘Ulederu’ originally came across like some alien transmissions from the Poltergeist telly and New Jersey’s own certifiable wingnuts Schizo Fun Addict do it justice with their own haunting gargles and glistening guitarscapes, while Bearsuit’s own Harold Nono expands ‘The Tide To steal Away’ original 73 seconds to nearly five minutes, completely reinventing its pondering ambience into a nail-biting journey through outer space: dark, foreboding, and ominously anticipatory. What lies ahead behind that next star or shimmering galaxy?

House Of Tapes (Yuuya Kuno) wreaks havoc across his laptop and Midi to imbue ‘My Drive’ with a Sabbathian, heavy metal stomp which may be too unsettling for some to bear; two other “re-models” are on offer, including Hanali’s “Gorge” music take, which combines eerie spoken-word with tribal drumming and flickering electronics and my personal favourite, Michael Valentine West’s Eno-esque ambient dreamscape. More hauntological soundscapes are delivered via The Moth Poets’ horror film soundtracking of ‘Slow Motion Fade’. The project previously collaborated with Senji Niban on an earlier Bearsuit release (‘Live At The River Lounge’) and their soothing-yet evocative remakes are among my favourites here, alongside John 3:16 (Phillipe Gerber)’s ambient drones and Stricknice’s melodic glitch cut-ups that permeate ‘Humanity Is Coming.’

There is much to digest here and while not everything may be your personal cuppa, it gives you an excellent cross section of the state of today’s electronic and experimental music scene.

Jeff Penczak

Various Artists – ‘Eamon The Destroyer – A Small Blue Car – Re-made/Re-modelled’ (Bearsuit Records)

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