the texture of concrete: caisson’s new brutalism

October 30, 2014 at 11:01 am | Posted in new music, no audience underground | Leave a comment
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Caisson – High Rise (tape and A7 microzine, Invisible City Records, ICR02, edition of 20 or download)

caisson - high rise

Two releases old and Invisible City Records are already looking indispensable. The inaugural tape, Shunned House, from Lovecraft-inspired horror-drone outfit Joseph Curwen has been making dark, oily waves and will be accounted for by Comrade McKeating on this blog in due course. The second release, High Rise by Caisson, is a near-static, Culveresque, low-level roar with pit-of-stomach troubling bass that effortlessly maintains an atmosphere of unease over a mammoth 45 minutes. It is apparently inspired by JG Ballard, another favourite author of mine (base the third release on Philip K. Dick and ICR will complete the set…) and the harsh geometries of the concrete architecture in which his psychosexual dramas take place.

This tempted me into a little experiment. The campus on which I work – University of Leeds – contains some justly famous instances of Concrete Brutalism so yesterday lunchtime, whilst listening to this piece really fucking loud on my walkman, I strolled around taking pictures as the mood dictated. The harsh, low, unseasonably bright October sun was perfect – making everything seem even more alienating than usual. I listened to it again as I was picking and editing the best of these images and present this ‘photo-essay’ as my review. If a picture paints a thousand words then this is the longest article I have ever written…



Invisible City Records

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