Oubys :: Second Planet (Testtoon)

Second Planet is an attempt to give aural form to heavenly bodies, to patch a sound to places beyond or home and to hear the otherworld. The simple made into the extraordinary.

In this age of sensory overload, of tremulous smartphones, of kaleidoscope screens and, of course, people banging on about absolute shite, one would think that the ambient album would be the go to aural tonic. But the opposite is the case. Despite there being a wide range of wonderful musicians exploring absence and silence, modulation and meditation, their message is sidelined by most. Most, but not all. Testtoon Records have been at the coalface of ambient music for more than half a decade now with their champion of the soundscape being one Wannes Kolf aka Oubys.

Second Planet has six sonic moons orbiting, each one a strange and wonderful world of its very own. Resonance and reverb are central tenets of the 12”. Chords are sent into a spiral, a vortex of feedback and echo before being captured once more. Take “Calling.” A high frequency line pierces the piece and around this metallic needle bellow and bass. “Shape” has a similar form. Sounds loops, colliding again and again as a tension builds into a crushing climax of severing shrapnel. Oubys creates palpable audio scenario, as the listener you truly become immersed in his ideas. At times this immersion can be unsettling, a blindfold lifted and still finding yourself in darkness. Nevertheless, there are also strangely warm works within the sextet such as the undulating ocean of “Diplox Fontanel Shift” or shifting strings of “Iso Prism.”

Wolf is an artist who works with space, the absence and presence of it and how that affects both the sound and the listener’s experience of it. Second Planet is an attempt to give aural form to heavenly bodies, to patch a sound to places beyond or home and to hear the otherworld. The simple made into the extraordinary.

Second Planet is available on Testtoon.

TAGS: , , , , , , , ,

Comments are closed.