Review: Linden Pomeroy – Ikiryo

Ikiryō ArtworkLinden Pomeroy doesn’t use delay and reverb to generate a sense of space, but to smother it. By sending each guitar note through funnels of infinite repeat, opening track “Festival Of Red Leaves” grows tendrils of harmony and compounded feedback, which press together until the initial melodious sentiment is squeezed out entirely. Once all of the individual strands have merged together into a whole, all that’s left is an eternal gasp of harsh noise – the result of separate frequencies cancelling eachother out, leaving just the electricity and vibration that they all have in common. It’s a profound and rather timely rendition of apocalypse, in which differences in shape and form (and, by analogous extension, ideology) feel futile once all sonic matter is reduced to its most primitive, homogenous form.

The second track swaps the singularity of the first track with a sequence of melodic chambers, each housing the guitar within a different atmospheric casing. Those infinite delays are shortened into extended comet trails, dripping out the back of contemplative guitar refrains as they soar over field recordings of cicadas at night, or dwell within absolute silence, or press and clip against the walls of stereo volume confinement, or detonate within excessive amplifier distortion. Compared to the absolution of the first track, this piece feels more nomadic; Pomeroy wanders the plain of minor key, too melancholically disturbed to rest, wearily ingesting the modulations in atmosphere which cross-fade like dusk into night into day. Yet both pieces navigate their circumstances by tapping into a very rough, almost feral breed of guitar amplification, gushing out of the grill as an unfettered expression of love or upset. Despite its material basis in valves and circuitry, Pomeroy finds a way in which to make the amplifier a very sincere extension of himself.