Boomkat Product Review:
Very welcome reminder of an evocative 2001 beauty by sound alchemist Stephan Mathieu and sound artist Ekkehard Ehlers, reissued on archivist label Keplar - massive RIYL William Basinski, The Caretaker, Pole.
Hearkening back to what feels like another time altogether, ‘Heroin’ shares the results of Mathieu and Ehlers’ recordings made between Christmas and NYE 2000/2001; a suite of warbling seasonal tones and lush crackle capturing a sense of wide-eyed innocence that only feels uncannily nostalgic, hauntologically apt right now, 20 years later.
Sifting ephemera thru algorithmic processes and a seasonally bleary lense of soft focus glow and rustling textures in a style that has become a hallmark of Mathieu’s, and also found on Ehlers’ gems such as ‘Plays John Cassavetes’, the results cast us back to that strange niche of time with, 9/11, Iraq, and the War on Terror on the horizon.
The music captures this transitional feel in a gauzy flux between analog and digital spheres, slipping time and phasing minds from the evocative fireworks and organ of ‘New Years Eve’ and washed out looptopia of ‘Rose’ to more smudged, dubwise dimensions in ’Supertramp’ and the haunted glitch thizz of ‘Herz’, thru more pensive doom drone glitch in ‘Joshua’s Theme’ that, with hindsight, only feel eerily, profoundly symptomatic and evocative of that era’s psyche.