Com Truise :: Iteration (Ghostly International)

Iteration may suffer a little from that samey-ness that has crept into some of his previous records, but honestly, if you’re coming to Com Truise for this sound, is there really anything wrong with “more of the same” if it’s done well? Probably not, and with a little pruning of a few tracks here and there, it’s an absolute corker of an LP. Taken in context, his move to Los Angeles is reflected beautifully in the inner-city sounds of Iteration. Try driving to this stuff and you’ll really find its core.

Com Truise (aka Seth Haley) is back on Ghostly International with his second official full-length album, Iteration, on CD, cassette and lovingly pressed on lickable split blue-and white vinyl, as well as—exceptionally irritatingly—a candy-floss split pink and white version available exclusively through a single, US-only retail outlet that’s far more suited to the cover artwork. Why Ghostly? Why?

Things get off to a roaring, neon-lit start with the 80s sleaze of “…Of Your Fake Dimension” honed to video game menu screen perfection, topped of with some goth guitar thrown in for good measure. “Ephemeron” follows up with some killer melodies before being pitch bent and filtered into a crystal meth-fueled smudge of wobbly blancmange. “Dryswych” proves that Com Truise wanted to release a full-bodied, no holds-barred LP this time around, and there’s every 80’s ad and movie soundtrack trick in the book here, from those instantly recognizable pads to the squared off kick drums Prince would be jealous of.

“Isostasy”—the second “single” preview track released via YouTube—is better still, the chopped up robotic vocals promising VHS Head-fuckery, before it filters into a Vaporwave-like sound-bed. “Memory” tracks like a direct sequel that’s equal parts great and average, and it’s here that a worry begins to creep into the back of one’s mind: is Iteration going to start sounding samey? Ultimately, yes it does a bit. Tracks like “Propagation” or “Vacuume” are really nice: punchy, colorful, funky… all that. But the initial promise that Com Truise might take his sound in new directions is never really fulfilled. The former pilfers the same sounds from ???, the latter from “Dryswych” though it’s more sawtooth aggressive than either. The noodling “Ternary” or “Usurper,” for example, are a little more by-the-numbers Truise than the more hi-def shafts of neon offered elsewhere by Iteration, and though neither outstay their welcome, they do stifle the album’s momentum a little.

Cue the hazy, humid ambiance and almost romantic strings of “Synthio,” coming to the rescue just in time. The title track is just as full of energy as the best moments earlier on, begging the question as to whether Iteration needs “When Will You Find The Limit…” as both feel like outros, this being the stronger of the two even though it’s almost too reminiscent of “Memory.”

Iteration may suffer a little from that samey-ness that has crept into some of his previous records, but honestly, if you’re coming to Com Truise for this sound, is there really anything wrong with “more of the same” if it’s done well? Probably not, and with a little pruning of a few tracks here and there, it’s an absolute corker of an LP. Taken in context, his move to Los Angeles is reflected beautifully in the inner-city sounds of Iteration. Try driving to this stuff and you’ll really find its core.

Iteration is available now on Ghostly International.

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