I begin and end my journey on the precipice. PSYCHO-SYSTEM is a rumbling beneath me, the deathly choir glinting in the sky, the prophetic creaking of joints prior to breakdown, the curdling of thought like fog. For almost four hours – across six canyon-wide pieces, each 29 minutes plus – I am held at a distance from the light and heat of the main activity, caught in the crossfade between observance and immersion. Like an astral projection in process, I am myself and above myself – a becoming, not a stasis – in the midst of curling my hand around the object before me.
It slots into sense when taken in the context of the track title’s here – “Delirium”, “Catharsis”, “Bi-Polar” – which place me in the blurry throes of various psychological adjustments of hue. “Catatonia” begins as a gorgeous astral synthesiser waltz (like a music box of stars), whose beauty becomes blurred by both harsh electronic strobes and the plucked strings that droop like willow branches over the top; time overlaps, repeats in lapsing fragments, as my movement starts to feel anti-gravitational and unsettlingly inconsequential. Meanwhile, “Delirium” feels like walking the crumbling rim of a volcano – reverberant drums depict rocks collapsing under heat, while a molten falsetto choir steams out of the abyss below; beckoning me in, warning me from danger. I sway in the confusion and vertigo.
The set encapsulates what has always drawn me to My Cat Is An Alien’s music: the sense of one foot elevated off the floor, leaving the other to quiver and retain a balance that isn’t. As I stare into the shape and colour of each of these pieces – which fortifies in the first few minutes and then trembles in semi-stability, sides fading and bending – and eventually my perception of sound becomes an observation of synaptic pops and waves; the bumps and pulses of brain activity and spiritual voyage. The inside of my mind folds outward like its own universe, and in a manner that I still don’t quite comprehend, I’m left overwhelmed by the breadth and unknown of my own head, awash with forces that feel foreign even to me. And thus, the opening track “Hallucination” is just that: a posture of infiltrating lines and lights out of nowhere, or at least, the parts of me that I am yet to understand.