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The midnight hour crept unto thee with hasty caution, revealing ‘A Little Night Music: Aural Apparitions from the Geographic North’, our third putrid prowl into Halloween-inspired sounds to torment and tantalize throughout the season. For this bout of distinguished dementia, we culled 31 brand new tracks of haunted hysteria conjured by some of the most alluring ambientists and outer auteurs from around the world.
Spanning over two hours across two cassettes, ‘A Little Night Music…’ unfurls itself in a literary horror structure, appearing and disappearing through a stirring Prologue and Epilogue by London-based cellist Oliver Coates, with each side of the cassettes introducing its Chapter with a chilling dirge courtesy of the inscrutable Geographic North House Band.
What fills the ensuing pages is a mirthful tale concocted by an assembly exploring a realm all at once mournful and fatalist at its core. Entries from Clarice Jensen, Malibu, and the collaboration of Like a Villain and Christina Vantzou bring about endless glacial landscapes accented by pitch-grey skies. Conversely, transmissions from Michael Valentine West, M. Sage, Gregg Kowalsky, and Austrian ambient stalwart Fennesz explore richly textured mines of foreboding glee.
Suspicion is the word when considering Zelienople’s eerie horse-carriage clip-clop, Nick Malkin’s neon-lit noir-jazz, or Carmen Villain’s gripping dub excursion. Elsewhere Ki Oni, Takagi Masakatsu, and Mary Lattimore (joined here by Paul Sukeena) provide glimmers of warmth amidst a tortured chill.
Notable is the resurrection of Lotus Plaza and his solemnly hopeful piano composition, while barren hallucinations courtesy of Alex Zhang Hungtai, Ilyas Ahmed, and Danny Paul Grody set the stage for a third act confrontation from Atlantans Fit of Body and Algiers, providing a one-two serving of sensual unrest and cautionary homily.
With hope and resolve shimmering through the final moments of our journey, know that all proceeds from the digital and cassette editions go directly toward Feminist Women’s Health Center, an Atlanta-based nonprofit providing safe, accessible, and compassionate abortion and gynecological care to all those who need it without judgement.