Review: KP Transmission – Temnoe Poznaetsya Chernim

klamm11_KPTThe artwork for Temnoe Poznaetsya Chernim is a blurred monochromatic photograph. A distant streetlight (or moonlight?) swirls in the background, while a dog-shaped silhouette peers out over the murk. Details are difficult to identify, and the way in which the shapes melt into eachother suggests that it was taken on the move, and perhaps in the rain – a frantic snap of the capture during a hasty trudge toward shelter. As well as mimicking the record’s bleak sonic interior, what the picture conveys is how KP Transmission (aka Karina Kazaryan) occupies this limbo of distorted capture. She exists in the margins between those eerie heathlands of keyboard and the dreary, faded resonance of her production aesthetic; neither the perceiver nor the perceived, but the strange, often hallucinatory bleed between the two.

While the lo-fi lens is a constant, the sounds within stumble between moods and states. The title track is a tribal dance for one, with strange keyboards surfing waves of tumbling percussion. “Chevengur” plods forward upon a two-chord loop, adorned with the shrieks and crashes of a hostile woodland at night. On “Chudovische”, Kazaryan sings nervously over the throbs of oceanic submersion, while a jagged piano loop snakes in and out. It’s like a pile of unlabeled polaroid pictures, tracing a horrible night wandering dockyards and confronting feral wildlife, tilting between crippling fear and a sort of hysterical, exhausted form of joy – blurred by shivering hands un-focusing the lens, snapped in a state of raw, survivalist panic. She capitalizes on the disturbing unknown that shrouds an album in low fidelity, smearing synths and drum machines into a state of mystique and interpid emotional turn. What hideous truths reside within the blur? What details am I forbidden from seeing?