"An arbitrary succession of more or less irritating sounds"

Thursday, 23 August 2012

Brazilian Waxing


Resonant lyrical waxing from previously unheard-of boy from Brazil, Gimu (‘g’ as in genre, not gold), an experimental ambient/drone musician based in Vila Velha, Brazil, who portrays himself modestly as ‘...only an old guy who's always making music.' Modesty becomes him, and the 'old' bit doesn’t count against you in this particular corner of the musical universe, at least not the last time I looked. He does seem to be ‘always making music,’ though, as a slew of releases surfacing on bandcamp through 2011-12 will testify. 

First up is They All Left One by One, They All Left the Radio On on Leonardo Rosado’s Heart and Soul with mastering by Jannick Schou, who doubtless contributes much to its wider-then-a-mile architecture. It falls readily into, while transcending, the dark ambient drone category - a bleak creaking cavernous space, through which stream what might be the etiolated transmissions of the eponymous abandoned radio. The sound design has more than an echo of The Caretaker's classic Selected Memories From The Haunted Ballroom (about which it's well worth reading k-punk's consideration of this album and its sound in relation to The Shining and the Hauntology meme of recent vintage).

An'On, An'On, An'On by Gimu by Heart And Soul Publisher

There’s a similar Caretaker-influenced post-hauntological air to A Silent Stroll On Sombre St. on newly inaugurated label, Constellation Tatsu, based in the resplendently named San Luis Obispo, CA. According to obsessively tape-documenting blog, Weed Temple, Gimu here '...crafts dusted, melancholic atmospheres that linger in the shadows, bordering on unsettling dark ambient. Ominous melodies loop and fall into and out of focus, plodding ahead in the sea of vintage crackles and modified found sounds. Music from the bottom of the woods.'
In fact, more than The Caretaker it’s a touch of the Leyland Kirby, with the self-conscious over-staging of grand melancholic gesture - the heartbreaking work of staggering etc playing about its elegiac arcs and dives. The nearest reference point that comes to mind for the thrilling abraded trajectory of the likes of “The Glorious Colours Of Leaves In The Fall” and “The Silver Passage Missed” is a cross between an obscure release of several years back on U-cover (remember them?) by Koen Daigaku and recent work by Willamette - though Gimu’s sound is rather more sprawling and unkempt than the latter, and all the better for it.

Most simple of the lot yet, but possibly most effective/affective to this listener, A Season in Your Soul, originally a cassette on Sacred Phrases and now on bandcamp, is a veritable blub-fest of heartstring-tug tape-saturated synthstring swells that bring out the throat in serial lumps as each hymnal heave hits home: ‘Orchestral and nostalgic, these tracks, in their composite simplicity, bring on the sense of a life once lived in grandeur. Obscured and muffled, the drones have a markedly ancient tone about them that alludes to the multi-layered, yet monochromatic, nature of the piece.’

gimu - a season in your soul // SP-29 by sacredphrases

Netlabel Pocketfields hosts Heights and Abysses trailed by the self-deprecating Brazilian with some reflections on his working methods: 'I never really know how to explain things about my music, details. There’s a lot of persistence in them. It’s not a case of sitting down, waiting to feel inspired, etc, etc. I struggle, I try hard, I experiment until I think a piece sounds nice, beautiful, touching, etc.’ "Highly Expected (Pending) Doom" is a great teeming slab of drone goodness that well evidences the worth of this persistence.

The Inexplicable Iceberg Blue is Gimu's noisiest Heckerian maximalist manifestation, all a-buzz with a huge harmonized ultraviolet post-shoegaze wall of gruzz. Nnnnniiiiice!

The Inexplicable Iceberg Blue (Part 2) by Gimu


A quieter incarnation is to be found on A Prayer for Time, originally a cdr from cuddly drone-lovin' Mancs, Heat Death, since rolled out on Gimu’s bandcamp. It sees the same short motif looped over for the course of three tracks, each progressively more drowned in cavernous noise than the last - somewhere between the recursive endlessnessism of Saito Koji and Jannick Schou’s noise-flecked shimmer.

Gimu - A Prayer For Time 3 by heat death records

There have been collaborations too. Beams is a more varied collab with SF minimal guitar plucker, Kwajbasket ‘…combining the guitar of kwajbasket and the drones of gimu,’ that rivals anything done by the likes of recent prolific tandemists, Pleq, Spheruleus, Hakobune, et al.

New Album: Kwajbasket & Gimu - "Beams" (Excerpts) (click on title for further information) by Gimu

Dawn by Gimu

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1 comment:

Mark Garner said...

Great post! Gimu is such a great artist capable of making endlessly engaging and touching music. My personal favourite, not listed here, is Crestfallen by Childrenplay records which I was lucky enough to get the bizarrely made CDr of. It's a free download from the Childrenplay site though. Thanks again. Mark

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