Jason Kahn has come a long way, now a respected sound artists and minimalist composer, it’s still a little hard to believe he played in bands like the Leaving Trains, Trotsky Icepick and the Universal Congress Of, and normally, this is where we would say, but actually you can hear much of those past groups in his new sound, but actually you can’t. Not at all. Kahn’s new work is world’s removed, and we’ve come to love that stuff nearly as much as we love(d) the late great Leaving Trains.
Which brings us to Tetras, a trio featuring Kahn, whose sound is a sprawling rhythmic abstraction that touches on everything from This Heat (especially This Heat!) to Aussie minimalist jazz combo the Necks, exploring the same sort of stretched out propulsive mesmer and textured dronescaping, each of the four side long tracks here a totally mesmerizing sprawl of layered buzz and deftly arranged melody, but with the rhythmic element really holding it all together. The songs, for as minimal and abstract as they are, not at all static, alive and full of energy, with a barely contained momentum, that makes the tracks seethe and thrum. The Necks vibe is huge, especially on the opener, which takes the cyclical slow build of that group and gives it a sort of avant / post industrial makeover, the drums a skittery shuffle, the bass loping and looping, all beneath layers of blurred organ chords, static wreathed melodies, and all manner of constantly shifting textures.
The other three tracks follow suit, subtly altering the equation, part two is much more droned out and noisy, the clouds of hiss and static ebbing and flowing, over a buried jazzy shuffle, the bass bowed unfurling long moaning tones, everything wreathed in an insectoid buzz, the result hazy and hypnotic. Part three opens up with a wall of crumbling chaotic white noise, a squall of warped blown out psychedelia, which gives way to some hushed shimmer, which is soon overtaken by some weirdly gorgeous feedback drenched melodies and distorted dynamics which soon explode into some awesomely blown out jazziness that reminds us of Laddio Bolocko or the Psychic Paramount, but so in-the-red, the tones blossom and expand transforming the sound into some strange heavy psychedelia. And finally, part four finishes things off with something a bit more dialed back, a scattering of tribal drum splutter, more bowed strings, and moaning melodies, this time under weird digitally processed guitar skree and crumbling distorted drones, eventually slipping into something slightly more straight forwardly jazzy, which also eventually morphs into a weirdly abstract but druggily dreamy electronic noise drenched jazziness.
Housed in a super thick, ultra deluxe, hand screened heavy cardboard jacket, and includes a download coupon as well.