(New Album Review) Drowning in Wood- Drowning In Wood

Drowning in Wood’s self-titled debut on Tulsa, Oklahoma’s Scissor Tail Records is the fruit of a collaboration between well-established experimental musicians Sergio Albano and Vincenzo de Luce, of Grizzly Imploded and Zero Centigrade, respectively. One can only hope that this was not a one-off, as this jaggedly beautiful collection is unmercifully far too short at just under forty minutes, yet often has a monolithic sense of stillness and power worthy of Natural Snow Buildings’ drone-epics.

The sound of Drowning in Wood is that of an austere but savage take on free-improvisation which takes folk-primitivism as a vague road map of sorts– the sonic palette is more or less just Albano’s electric guitar and de Luce’s acoustic guitars and other diverse sounds. What differentiates their vision from that of forebears like Bill Orcutt, Eugene Chadbourne, the Snow Buildings, and Pelt, though, are the glitchy disruptions that can slice straight through the dissonant, searching guitar chords and heavily-processed, synth-like textures– think harsh, grim drone-folk punctuated with heavily processed sounds and sonic artifacts. The format for much of these pieces, where muffled rumblings and searing drones lay a bed for percussive outbursts both acoustic and electronic, creates a mood that is both meditative and tense with controlled violence.

This one could certainly stand as the required listening of the year for all those in love with the spooky deep end of psychedelic drone and minimalism.

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