From the "it must be music, because this ain't no painting" department comes a new solo release from percussionist Jon Mueller.
The one-time member of Pele, Collections of Colonies of Bees, and Raccoons and collaborator with Bhob Rainey and Jack Wright recorded this thirty-two and a half minutes of sound. It comes with instructions to "play at maximum volume in a large empty room."? I thought about moving the sofa but needed something to sit on.
Within six minutes, my yellow dog sat up and exited rather quickly. Mueller creates music like Rothko painted canvases. There is a form here; it's a percussionist's record. But there are no references to familiarity. A tide of static (?) flows in, and things begin to rattle around you. Beneath it all, you recognize the tap-tap-tap of the snare. But it is far away, and there is an energy field between you and the drummer. Knobs are turned, things drift in and peak. You wonder if you should have followed the dog, but you stay.
Sometimes harsh, never dull, Mueller cuts huge swaths of sound; his distorted drumming calls to mind pieces produced by Norwegian Helge Sten (Deathprod). Like Sten's work, the sounds are neither purely industrial nor entirely human.
Difficult? Yes. Satisfying? Yes, and definitely room-clearing music.