Trip-O-Meter: 5 out of 5
Here's a tripped-out set that I stumbled on one of the many, way underground cassette tape releases than seem to be all the rage with the bedroom studio hep kids these days. This is a guitar drone album whose press release gleefully states that all the sounds on this recording were made with a guitar. Now, as a musician I tend to be a bit of a synth geek, but I do very much appreciate guitarists who are interested in melting and mangling the sounds of their guitar as you'll hear here. It's sort of like the trippier, medatative moments of Slowdive or Godspeed You Black Emperor, but, y'know, without all of those annoyances like the rest of the band or songs. I swear I meant that last sentence as a complement.
It's almost useless to discuss songs here, as the tracks are all guitar drones and simple but effective riffs sometimes extended to insane proportions. What you're looking for here is texture - choosing the track you're going to play is like choosing the your ice cream flavor. Maybe it's a bigger decision as several of the tracks here will last far longer than it takes for you to eat your 'squid-flavored' ice cream (if you want to try that flavor, head here and look for the Ice Cream City:http://www.namja.jp/):. Anyway, I find myself typically going for the marathon sessions on the second disc where "Sunflower" and "I Miss You, Don't Fall Asleep Yet" space out for around a half hour each. It suits me well as I screw around on the internet, make trippy marker art drawings, and so forth. That said, the first disc does present more of those hardcore drone-y sounds that are akin to sticking your head in the cosmic freezer.
Most of the music labelled 'new age' seems to sort of blow. I don't think anyone's slapping this set with that label, but it's much more likely to teleport your brain to the calm, intergalactic cloud that so-called new age music tends to imply. At any rate, this is not a bad introduction to the strange world of underground cassette tape drones if you haven't already made the plunge.
Head over yonder to download a copy: