Review: My Cat Is An Alien – Art Is A Tear Of Noise And Infinite Silence

It’s an album title that appears to slot in beautifully with My Cat Is An Alien’s way of working. The duo always seem to be channelling something so momentary and unpredictable, immersed in a sudden rupture in normality’s flat-lining stasis – in deep concentration and bodily escape simultaneously, as if fiercely tapped into an energy that exists beyond the sensory spectrum within which earthly reality is built. Their performances are rich in purpose but always seemingly founded on a logic that lays beyond the immediate grasp of most, and it is this sense of the elusory – the magic collision of wonder and displacement, of mesmerisation and confusion – that makes them such a delight to see and to hear. Art Is A Tear In Noise And Infinite Silence, and MCIAA exist as a ripple of mysterious activity in amongst the ceaseless din of the world.

The record consists of seven spontaneous compositions (no overdubs, no outtakes) composed on a new collection of homemade string instruments and rewired electronic devices. Swarms of falsetto voices, spluttering static and the twang of plucked metal collapse into wormholes of no return; part locked-groove and part improvisatory ribbon to nowhere, in which the infinite future and void of non-existence are rendered both frictional and one and the same. “De Revolutionibus Orbium Coelestium” sounds like hundreds of clock pendulums bending and quivering, as though caught in a vibratory tug-of-war between two dimensions, while “The New Cosmogony Of Pain” sounds like a choir of phantoms conjuring strange, prickly flames of distortion and dissonance. Perhaps it’s due to the fact that the band are experimenting with new instruments – and thus entering the sonic unknown with the same blank canvas of expectation as the listener has – but the sense of probing exploration is immense here, with each piece drifting into view like the blinking lights of a distant spaceship.