Recent mentions in Dusted!

My recent tape Beginners and digital collection of live recordings both get some words out of Bill Meyer at Dusted:

Billy Gomberg is no beginner. He’s been releasing music of his own and with Fraufraulein, a duo with Anne Guthrie, for nearly a decade. And the sound sources he uses on this tape are familiar ones — electric bass, urban field recordings, synthesizer and hand-manipulated objects. Even so, it feels like something new is happening here. Gomberg’s music has often seemed to stretch away from the listener, luring you to follow it through virtual expanses of space and time. Now it seems closer at hand, the sounds like sunning fish just under a pond’s surface. They’re simultaneously more recognizable and more processed that what he’s played in the past, creating a discreet reality that never quite loses its mystery no matter how often you play it.  (link)

In his summary of his Voting Rights Day shopping on Bandcamp, Bill found my bundle of live sets to defy his “not quite a physical object” rule:

Well, there go the rules. This DL-only compilation of concert performances by one of my favorite ambient recording artists of recent years shows that the carefully wrought, ultra-deep atmosphere of his recent cassettes is no fluke. (link)

 

We Need No Swords on Beginners

We Need No Swords comes back with a take on <em>Beginners</em>:

‘Beginners’, from San Francisco’s Billy Gomberg, is prime Dinzu. An artist who draws from different experimental and underground musicking practices – ambient drift, electroacoustic composition, improvisation, and so on – Gomberg has amassed a pretty decent-sized discography over the past few years, with releases on Another Timbre, Strange Rules, Marginal Frequency and others (the muted clonks of 2016’s ‘Slight At That Contact’ are a favourite round these parts). This is Gomberg’s second outing for Dinzu Artefacts, following on from last year’s ‘Transition’, and it amps up the fusty, fuzzy eerieness this time around to produce a creeped-out soundscape that’s up there with Jandek’s ‘Ready For The House’ in terms of skin-prickling spookiness. Here, muffled clunks and bangs merge with queasy, sustained tones, with ambient hum and tape hiss providing an uncomfortable translucent sheen. Everything sounds disconcertingly out of phase, as if bleeding through from a parallel dimension, the everyday life of ghosts captured accidentally by a hapless field recorder. EVP via the Tascam DR-40. Sonic ectoplasm in the Zoom. Most eye-popping of all is ‘Seeing The Sequel First’, where a plangent chorus of clangs plays out against a backdrop of subdued growls and murmurs, like some wraith gamelan playing lullabies for the beasts of the abyss.

Beginners in Tiny Mix Tapes

A walk through the zone from Jason C at Tiny Mix Tapes:

Where Slight At That Contact was the crumbling, desolate urban hellscape right before your eyes, Beginners is what remains: darkness, stretches of silence, lingering pulses of the grid, a sonic mirage of hope beyond the bleakness. It may all be a dream, a blurred memory we experience in real time, or on repeat, with a haunting, inescapable sense of déjà vu.

read here for the full writeup or click through below:

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A Changed Meaning in The Alcohol Seed

Lovely and thoughtful examination of A Changed Meaning in The Alcohol Seed:

“…no bullshit…”

check out the writeup at the following link or read on below:

https://alcoholseed.com/2018/01/28/like-mountain-air-billy-gombergs-a-changed-meaning/

The prolific electroacoustic artist and Fraufraulein member, Billy Gomberg, had an eventful 2017. A Changed Meaning was one of two tapes to see the light of day throughout the year — the other, Transition, was released by Dinzu Artifacts (just named Experimedia’s favourite label of 2017). You might say that A Changed Meaning is Gomberg sticking to his bread and butter, but, even though the formula is a familiar one, it doesn’t mean it hasn’t been refined. This might be conjecture, but the contemporary stage for minimalist experimental music seems no longer set for improvisation and guitar drone. Much of what’s been coming down the pike sounds more manufactured than played, donning an algorithmic gloss I don’t always care for.

A Changed Meaning is a refreshing rebuttal to these pillowy works, the album possessing a quality of performance much like a handmade ring carries the mark of its silversmith. Like mountain air, Gomberg’s dronescapes are cold, diaphanous, and expansive. The music has a harsh noise physicality to it, where the harsh aspect is replaced with moodiness and foreboding. From these blackened, nebulous compositions we’re given a window into a world of finer textures that exist closer to the core: purposeful and calculable string vibrations brought to life by electromagnetic pulses. Whatever else is going on is hard to say — some electroacoustic wizardry no doubt. What is apparent is that Gomberg can reign in this music at will, and he does so at pivotal moments to keep his pieces on course.

A Changed Meaning doesn’t push boundaries, nor does Gomberg attempt to reinvent drone music here. What we have instead is a another solid release from a dependable musician. I can appreciate a lofty epic as much as the next guy, but the albums that tend to hold the most clout over time are the straightforward, no bullshit ones. Time will inevitably tell, but I think Gomberg has achieved this with A Changed Meaning. Here’s to hoping we see more work from him in 2018.