Quality: 4 out of 5
Trip-O-Meter: 5 out of 5
To many, it may seem that creating a drone is a simple procedure - just sit on one note of your synthesizer for 20 minutes or so and let 'er rip. I've given it a shot on several occasions, though, and getting it right is not so easy. This album, happily, gets it right. Sister Waize's latest release isn't so much music as a set of experiences for you to enter. David Mekler, the fellow behind these, calls his recordings 'folding drone music.' I don't quite get that concept, but put these on in the right frame of mind and the visions will surely come.
I typically like to ramble on a bit about the songs, but the tracks here pretty much defy description. Even Mr. Mekler doesn't suggest playing more than one or two of these at a time. In fact, he's created a set of instructions to go along with these albums. I can't write anything better than the man himself, so here's an extended quote to get you ready for this psychedelic dark ride:
"1. Listen at night, before going to sleep. Make sure you are not too tired though because it will be very easy for you to just fall asleep.
2. Be in total darkness, pitch black.
3. Lay in your bed, on your back and make yourself as comfortable as possible. Lay for a minute or two until you've settled into your bed before you start the track.
4. Make sure there will be no interruptions that will take you away from the track before it ends, the whole thing must be listened to in one sitting without interruption (this is extremely important, think about it as losing your train of thought and then trying to continue).
5. Only use decent headphones/good headphones. Do not use earbuds by any means, you will just be wasting your time. Sennheiser is my personal brand of choice, you can easily get a great pair of headphones from them for less than $50.
6. While listening try your best to keep your eyes closed and body still as much as possible. It's very difficult to avoid fidgeting for 20 minutes or so, but try your best. This is so you can give complete attention to the sound as it moves.
7. Keep your mind on the sound and let your mind ride with it. Letting your mind wander is fine, but don't get hung up on anything specific for too long. Just try and let go.
8. If you can, stare at the back of your eyelids while you listen and focus on the colors. This is where the inner eye hallucinations can usually come from, don't stress it too much though, keep most of your attention on the sound.
9. Most songs that I've made which are applicable to what is being talked about here are shorter than a television show... keep this in mind before listening. Understand how long the track is exactly so that you know ahead of time. I say this so that you won't start to think about when it will be over while the song is in progress. I promise you, it will end eventually. They are as long as I feel they need to be, and as short as possible."
I followed the instructions and ended up with a pretty surreal meditational experience. It's certainly far removed from typical music theory, but it serves its intended purpose quite well. It's sort of like what Lou Reed's "Metal Machine Music" could have been if Reed wasn't so busy trying to stick it to the record company. Give it a listen when you're ready. In fact, it's pretty late at night here in jolly old Japan, and I do believe I'm going to go ahead and trip out to a track or two right now. For more of Sister Waize's sonic world, head for this website:
Listen to Me:
Sister Waize - 2011 - Realignment Series I
Sister Waize - 2011 - Realignment Series II
Sister Waize - 2011 - Realignment Series III