Morphology by The Subdermic


The Subdermic
Morphology (Opal Tapes; CS/DL)

On the new tape from The Subdermic (Lilly Phoenix) a half dozen unique new tracks emerge. Her sound is hesitant, emerging on Ballet Of The Sutures at first. The quirky synths seem to pop up and dive like a video game where characters vanish behind panels, doorways, manholes. With each sweet tweak she casts a scene of suspicion. The rock (sans roll) posture of Rage 1st Movement is quirky and contained. Glass is shattered, feedback is delivered in a metered way, and a squeaky doorway opens and closes to a rapid fire set of cut wires.

The muscle on this one is lean and brash, but instead of an all out noise assault, it’s considered in its delivery with a squelching, purring finish. An Upside Down, opens with an open orchestra pit, warming, halting time. It’s stilled separation is icy, like a peripheral thriller soundtrack. This is a luscious ambient/drone work with dark edges and a neoclassical core.


On side two God The Mind (Ossicle Phases Mix) emerges first. It revs up from a low tonal range into a motorized whir. Phoenix build an atmosphere of unique suspense with the pitch of violin-like strings on full throttle to wavy, elongated gradients of sound effects – like inclined sound waves. Somehow she manages to master these waves without much distortion, but takes them as far tot he brink as possible before moving into the Southern Sun. Now we are in the galactic territory of master space music crafters of yore, and The Subdermic’s spin on the fleeting genre of soundtrack composers who show us other worlds just beyond our Earthly boundaries. Think Edgar Froese, and to a lesser extent Klaus Schulze.

We are transported to the hinterland of outer space without a net, though instead of instilling fear the senses have dropped all their guards in favor of free floating. It’s a gorgeous piece of music. In conclusion, Of Moths And Butterflies punctuates and penetrates the proceedings by building on the previous theme with uncertainty. The rounded percussion hails like a siren, and the pulse pattern flutters faster. The layers of ambient melody swirl gently with the beat rhythm like a trickling fountain. For a conscientious deep listening experience look no farther this month.

More about The Subdermic.

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