Brandal & Remlap – Selective Timestream reviewed by Heathen Harvest
For the experienced bud smoker, the most comfortable stretch of intoxication is the first two hours after the smoke has cleared. I suggest a two-hour track for such a time when you seriously need to think some thoughts, such as this one. This is mighty hefty entry, the fruits of the labor of Canadian Noisemaker Jake Vida and Andreas Brandal of Flesh Coffin fame, a collaboration that sees the two men exploring some very serious depths, but coming back with something as serious as the violent nature of the bile they decided to call “Selective Timestream”.
I don’t know what the hell was being thought or considered in the selection of the image that was chosen to include in the free zip folder you can get directly from Pointless Blank/Art As Intent. It’s a collage of aerial shots of various different landscapes. It looks like an uncut postcard sheet. But the sound… man… heavy.
The type of noise we get here sounds decidedly analog, there is a bit of discernible synthesis in there, but it serves as a lead into or refresher to the many long stretches of soulless rumblings, high-statics, sometimes paired up, often times lone beasts within the one beast that is the entire track.
The makeup of the material used to make this huge piece remain a mystery to me, but I could swear that the more interesting bits are some menacingly processed vocals. These appear toward the 40 minute mark, and are hopelessly cryptic in their mangled glory, if they indeed ARE vocals… When you get into the second hour, things become a little different, but if you have not been discouraged/bored/distracted, then there are some much needed tone changes, some of the best being the left/right panning of some more synth-sounding hits, sounding almost percussive, some filter sweeps, and even what I suspect is a sort of duelling-banjos moment between the Andreas and Jake. One burst of noise comes at one level, the other interrupts, both hit it at once, there are a couple of awkward silences, but the thing never wavers.
You have to be quite entranced to take this in one entire sitting. I don’t know what is the correct mindset exactly, but the sheer volume of this work is certainly not for weaklings. This is for all intensive purposes, a really fucked up journey. One I personally was happy to take. This would actually be pretty killer on a road trip, preferably along some really empty and maddening bit of desert. On another personal note: if you can experience this work the whole way through, you will return a much more empowered person. Believe you me, the most torturous thing about this free release is not the noise itself, but the shit that will no doubt come at you from within your own mind. Be forewarned!
Can download the album here https://pointlessblank.wordpress.com/2011/08/09/a2i-9-brandal-remlap-selective-timestream/