MY CAT IS AN ALIEN / STEVE RODEN - Cosmic Debris Volume II CD
CD / A Silent Place
Collaboration supremos My Cat Is An Alien branch out from their usual circle of avant-garde outsiders and team up with sound artist Steve Roden, far and away one of the most persistently inventive microsound composers of his generation. This second volume in A Silent Place's Cosmic Debris series is a CD issue of what was originally a vinyl-only release, one where each party had their own twelve inches to fill, with Roden on one side, MCIAA on the other. The two Steve Roden pieces are representative of his recent tendency toward higher volume explorations, based upon more openly organic instrumentation. 'E-bows and Rainbows' features heavy use of woodwind-like sustained tones, weaving a slow, incremental melody whilst dull, resonant thuds pad out a stumbling beat and a corona of high frequency signals shimmers quietly in the background. 'My Dog Is A Yufo' goes even further towards organic instrumental sculpture, overlapping frail, filtered guitar chords while snippets of lost conversations falter around in the distance. Not by any means Roden at his most sophisticated or developed, but these two short pieces are still several cuts above your standard lowercase emissions. The second half of the disc is occupied by a twenty-minute My Cat Is An Alien piece, loaded with lo-fi compressed ambience, disembodied vocal stretches and wafts of tremolo guitar drone. It's a piece of music that has more in common with someone like Birchville Cat Motel than the precise, meticulous work of Steve Roden, but despite the incongruity this makes for a wholly worthwhile listen.