David Lackner – ‘In the Well of Eternal Living and Dying’ [Review]

in_the_well_square_styled 300x300Having followed Galtta closely since David Lackner called go, I’ve been waiting for the label-manager and core player to press himself onto vinyl. The results are not what I expected. Consider Lackner’s C40 from 2011, ‘My Leader, the Baby is Dead’: proudly mechanical, melodic phrases and recorded speech are made inhuman yet ritualistic, such that the notion of ‘sci-fi psychosis’ feels appropriate for the synthetic stew of copulating tubes and lab-grown feelings. Conversely, the A-side-long title track for ‘In the Well of Eternal Living and Dying’ bustles like a tree of birds with the twittering of flutes and charming honk of sax; bright percussion, bulbous bass, and the taut tones of Rhodes piano layout an always ascending rhythm; all the while, group vocals sing lyrics that seemingly capture the most psychedelic moments of Murakami’s meditation on human scale, The Wind-up Bird Chronicle – all to the effect of a more jazzy, less angsty Joan of Arc. In the gaps of the anthem, instruments swirl in Kraut-rock crescendos – a commune of solos – echoing the jubilee of bands like Akron Family and the instrumentalists Anvil Salute. Big, vibrant, and hardly the weirdness we feel from Lackner’s previous work. Then you flip the thing over and the familiar weird washes over you. “Still Inside” captures what I know and love most of Lackner’s outfit, while at the same time dashing silly concerns that the record could not do this and more: fronted by a looping mew with Furby-like emotional appeal, modulated synthesizers and staticky drumming form a ledger onto which hubristic saxophone jives in mockery of the programmed instructions murmuring throughout. Wonderfully weird. Similarly, the bad trip “Send in the Clowns” layers more instruction over a relentless gabber beat with glib effects and quasi-abrasive guitar (?) sounds – similar to the satire of Kylie Minoise – yet still sounding strangely accomplished as a composition. The brutal assault on existence continues by bleeding through the subliminal “Regular People” into the finale “A Semiperfect Number:” reaching the level of sentience and aesthetic spasms of Oneohtrix Point Never’s most recent work, a wild combination of timbrel swatches, rhythmic patches, and vaguely meaningful signifiers squirm with a futurist’s sentimentality. Lackner keeps building, building, and once he perfects this new edition to the complex, there should be nothing but hits to follow. LP limited to 300 copies.

Galtta LP

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