Boomkat Product Review:
After the boundless sub-bass ambience of Pjusk's excellent Sart album, 12k returns with a very different take on the microsound genre. For Myria marks British sound artist Jodi Cave's debut for the label, but those lucky enough to have caught his early CD-R output or his contribution to last year's Blueprints compilation (also on 12k) will have some idea of Cave's remarkable credentials as a composer. His greatest strength lies in the treatment of the more tactile-sounding electroacoustic sources, often towards the higher end of the frequency spectrum - not quite in the dog-troubling sonic strata occupied by Richard Chartier mind you, but rather the more delicate range of concrete sounds you might associate with someone crumpling a dried up autumn leaf in their hand. Consequently, but for one or two notable instances, there's not a great deal of bass in Cave's work. Far from being a criticism, that's merely indicative of the fact that there's so much detail in the sound world of this album that any increase in bandwidth would knock the whole affair out of proportion. Instead, the listener is treated to some of the most astonishingly high fidelity acousmatic soundscapes you'll hear anywhere. Take the 9-minute opener 'For Myria (One)': spectral high frequency sounds are shaped into melodious drones from which vast swathes of unexpected texture are revealed. The crowning moment comes when all sounds ebb away leaving a pronounced wave of crackle occupying a luxuriously wide stereo field. It's a wonderful balance between electronic sound sculpting and the art of field recording, the source material having been ingeniously obscured just enough to give it a touch of the ethereal without compromising its rich timbre. But for one (untitled) piece focusing in on harmonium drones and floorboard-rattling percussive plunges, the album sticks to the theme of quiet yet very physical-sounding electroacoustics, taking in recordings of (at least what sounds like) running water, birdsong and creaking incidental acoustics, all woven together into an immaculate sonic patchwork. Magnificent.