Review: PERILS – S/T

Perils - S/TWhere most collaborators try to find points of parallel alignment, I get the impression that Kyle Bobby Dunn and Benoît Pioulard delight as two visions bleed into eachother with a sleepwalkers apathy. Two cloud shapes merge into a clump of neither one nor other, with wisps of dissonance curling out of the collision. A mind tugs at two memories at the same time; a landscape disappears beneath the searing attack of lens flare; a broken piano sinks beneath the famish waves of the sea. Yet sometimes the images come into partial focus, and tangible songs start to emerge from the murk. They linger – Pioulard’s voice hovering above soft, glimmering strums of guitar – before melting once again into indistinction. It’s as though my eyes and ears are respiring, cycling between the tightening of focus and a state of sensory slack, shifting between the delicacy of individual objects and the choral bliss of the world’s colours and sounds.

The album comes wrapped in the muffle and crackle of the eroded archive. Sounds whirr precariously out of worn cassettes and waft out of old vinyl, resembling failing memories of a former time. On tracks like “Maps Of Sinking”, these smears of the past are overlain until the ambience loses all attribution to a specific place and time, with organs untidily latticed with swells of soft electronic drones, creating a matted cloud of “then”. And then suddenly, a track like “The Unbecoming” emerges like a childhood snapshot bobbing to the surface of amnesia. Pioulard sighs gently over the gentle tilt of two chords and the backlight of weathered electronics (presumably belonging to Dunn). My ears prickle to the plectrum attack and vocal sibilance, which promptly melts, once again, into a soup of vague sensory acknowledgement and memory loss.