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Never Presence Forever/Isolated Existence – A Future Scarred By Memory/Forever In The Dark CDr

1 May 2017 offering No Comment

Never Presence Forever/Isolated Existence –
A Future Scarred By Memory/Forever In The Dark

Darker Days Ahead BANDCAMP LINK

This CD-r release offers harsh noise and industrial elements split across two pieces by Never Presence Forever hailing from Virginia and Isolated Existence. Similar sonic elements bring these two artists together, but complexity (or simplicity rather) of the compositions are really what sets them apart.

Never Presence Forever‘s constructions of simple sound columns with minimal sequencing are really satisfying. The tracks are succinct and simple, but you will find dynamics here. “Passed In Forms” builds, then dehydrates into a sequence of gated and distorted white noise blasts which in turn leak into the somber “The Past Informs”. “A Future Scarred By Memory” is almost a synthesis of the two tracks both conceptually and sonically, and wraps up his part of the split nicely; the chilling end pushes some melody bleeds back into the now familiar static pulse of the previous tracks.

Isolated Existence‘s tracks push more towards a Nurse With Wound affect brandishing more turns and tosses than Never Presence Forever. And while I do like more ideas, in contrast to the relative stripped-down coherence of Never Presence Forever‘s side, I think Isolated Existence‘s tracks are the slightly weaker ones. Isolated Existence excels in really opening the atmosphere on “Forever In The Dark”. This closer is a really good mix of hollow and distant clangs with a more underscored progression and is probably my favorite on their side. The other tracks have a little “too much.” By no means a major detraction, Isolated Existence does manage to mix it up and move through different modes pretty flawlessly and never goes off the rails to imbalance this split.

I think this is probably one of the cleanest and classiest presentations of a CD-r I’ve seen in a while. With purposeful inserts and a hand touch, the super tough black CD-r is crucial in presenting this material as a tactfully limited and deliberate release. You can get away with a bloated 80 minute pool corpse of a CD-r with filler and chaff, but the length of the songs on this split really captures each artist’s strengths and prevents the release from feeling like an overcarbed starchy meal.

Composition: ★★★★☆
Sounds: ★★★½☆
Production Quality: ★★★☆☆
Concept: ★★★☆☆
Packaging: ★★★★☆
Overall Rating: ★★★½☆

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