April 8, 2008
US CD Brainwashed HAND006
Electronic Tape Music for T.I.T. Planetarium, Budapest.
recorded under a quilt at night in Marin County, CA
by Jack Dangers at Tape Lab (p) + (c) 2007
hand-set and printed with lead type by Michael Babcock at Interrobang Letterpress
The latest release in the ongoing (and excellent) Brainwashed Handmade series, Music For Planetarium is quite a departure in sound for one Jack Dangers, who already released his tenth album this year under the name Meat Beat Manifesto (Autoimmune). Dangers, who has been releasing music not only at a fairly prolific pace over the past twenty years, has also managed to keep a remarkable level of consistency, and one could argue that his dub-inflected music helped pioneer the way for different splinter-takes on the genre (like dubstep). You'll get no such booming beats and head-crushing rhythms here, though, as this eleven-song, forty-five minute release instead spins off into interstellar space, mixing fuzzy radio static sounds with deep bass rumbles and other groaning drones that definitely call to mind the title. Recorded for the T.I.T. Planetarium in Budapest, this is largely cold, sometimes creepy tape music that sweeps and haunts with undefined figures that lurk around the edges. It's a bit strange too, because the opener "Explanation..." actually sounds like a fairly typical beginning for Dangers, as an old voice sample sets the tone as a rumbling bassline threatens to overtake things. It ramps down as the song ends, though, and from there out it's a shot into more murky depths. As mentioned above, the album seems aptly-titled, but really one could project just about anything onto the amorphous sounds. I certainly wouldn't want to be listening to "Large Metallic Cloud" or "Pinwheel Galaxy" while exploring an abandoned building, but at the same time I imagine that "Polarissima Borealis" or "Fourcade-Figuero" would make the perfect soundtrack for exploring frozen tundra. Other artists have done similar work, and I'm most reminded of Biosphere's excellent Autour De La Lune and even Robert Henke's Signal To Noise. It's not quite the usual work from Dangers, but if you like the aforementioned slabs of ambience, the limited Music For Planetarium is definitely worth snagging before it's gone. - Aaron Coleman, Almost Cool
Over the years, Jack Dangers, maestro behind Meat Beat Manifesto, has made some interesting, thought-provoking, and sometimes intense music. His newest release, Music for Planetarium, consists of eleven tracks commissioned for a planetarium in Budapest, and these eleven tracks most certainly feel like space. These songs are primarily drones, quiet drones, hushed drones, beautiful drones, and they remind me of the wonderful score to 2001. As such, Music for Planetarium is the perfect soundtrack for calm mornings and for quiet nights, and, if you so desire, for star-gazing. According to the notes, it was "recorded under a quilt at night in Marin County, CA." Hmmm...interesting! I've enjoyed the quietness of the tones on this; it's one of the more relaxing records I've heard this year. - Press Play Record