“Lengvai / 60 x one minute audio colours of 2kHz sound” reviewed by Fluid Sonic Fluctuations

Hello again, I’m back with the next volume in my review series of Crónica releases, today I have for you this double CD album Lengvai / 60 x one minute audio colours of 2kHz sound by Lithuanian sound artist Gintas K. The 2 CDs are housed in a clear jewel case that also includes a 4 page booklet with more images of the album’s abstract cover artwork.

Lengvai / 60 x one minte audio colours of 2kHz sound are two pieces that each take up one disc of the 2 CD set, a total of 2 hours 5 minutes of music. Lengvai being described on the back of the jewelcase as a rhythmic and textural post-techno inspired piece, while 60 x one minute audio colours of 2kHz sound is a more conceptual sound art piece that also literally does take up the 60 tracks on Disc 2, all with other 1 minute variations of 2kHz sound. This 2 CD set is definitely an interesting and enjoyable varied release of music that kicks off on Disc 1 with the first part of Lengvai (easily or easy in English), titled Lengvai.

The first track is the most minimal and microsound influenced part of Lengvai starting with filtered liquid synth ticks moving towards frequency manipulation of sine wave tones accompanied by a soft subtle glitch rhythm and sine chords that kind of sound like Dub Techno stabs completely reduced to the first building block of the synth sounds. Mysterious and abstract but also with frequencies playing with your ears in the sensitive part of hearing, the first part is a calm start of a composition that does get more rhythmic and varied very quickly. No spoilers yet in this first part however. Ilgiau Ilgiau features glitch drums with a very funky groove to them, stereo panned noises and high frequency beeps are also part of the mixture. The sound does remind me a bit of Ryoji Ikeda’s more rhythmic works but with a swing and a “rougher” sound design. The glitch beats drive the music towards three note synth pattern that feels very “homely” and comfortable but also pleasantly clicky. Near the end of this part the music moves towards a more diffuse drone that gets glitched up as well in the rhythm of the music. That’s one of the interesting aspects of Gintas K music, the abrupt chopping up or manipulation of sound and unexpected moments. It creates a very fun kind of playfulness in the music that keeps it from sounding rigid and cold. Kūlgrinda, the third part is a much longer part that features more intense Glitch rhythms that accompany a pretty funny kind of distorted synth melody that features a heavy Wah like filter effect (sounds like manipulation of the Body Resonance of the Scream 4 effect in the DAW Reason), as well as some heavy phaser action. Maybe a little cheesy in its sound but it gives the music a funky and also pretty humorous sound. After this section the music fades to a watery synth sound, very liquid, like a kind of device sucking out water accompanied by high frequency clusters of ticks. This crossfades into a distorted drone and gets accompanied by the glitch beat of the first section. Now however the sound of the full mix gets gradually more and more mangled into distorted, folding and trembling by the manipulation. The added high harmonics give the music a very nice adventurous vibe and I found this manipulation especially great. The full mix gets more and more distorted at the end, ending a full wave of warbly distortion, excellent. Fourth part Koto starts with a great drone mostly at the left side of the stereo image that gets heavily flanged, the flanger settings being manipulated in various patterns that add cool resonances and Noise like harshness to the sound. The music builds with a more sparse, polyrhthmic Glitch beat accompanying the drone. In the second half of this track the drone fades out and the music is more focussed on the glitch rhythm in which now also short tones are added for resonance. This second part also features it’s own microsections of repetition, giving the composition new twists of direction. The piece moves toward the end with a different drone, more similar to first track Lengvai, pure sound in a higher range of frequencies, soft beds of Noise add a bit of rain / wind sounds to the mixture, the piece then ends with only the drone and noise beds. Early Set is the final part of Lengvai and is also the longest track at 27 minutes 19 seconds length. Just like the pieces before, the music flows through various sections but with even more variation. Highlights in this part for me are the bird like sounds in the first half, that also sound like distant car alarms. Then there’s the awesome build up of Noise in the second half that speeds up in a big and loud way, very impressive to listen on speakers with great work in the bass too. In the last section of the piece there is a section of what sounds like music samples being combined with washes of Noise and rising high frequencies, harmonic and harsh at the same time, very nice. At the very end the piece breaks down to a minimal stereo glitch rhythm that gradually gets more and more distorted and mangled, even slammed. Until it sounds like microscoping broken black holes of sound. Great ending to Disc 1 of this release.

Disc 2 features the full piece 60 x one minute audio colours of 2kHz sound. Because the piece’s 60 tracks are actually part of the composition and sound manipulation method I will obviously now give an overall impression of the piece rather than go through all the seperate tracks. This piece was definitely a pretty unique listening experience, the 2 kHz sinewave sound is audible on pretty much all the 60 tracks, either pure or manipulated in frequency, rhythm or other ways. The length does of course make the piece a bit challenging because sounds at 2 kHz can sound rather fatiguing on the ears for a long long time, fortunately Gintas K creates quite a lot of variation in the piece, not only manipulating the 2 kHz sound itself but also adding other sometimes glitchy high frequency sounds to it. I guess the best way to describe how this piece felt to me is that it’s somewhere in between a physical experience of raw sound as well as rooms and other places where this sound might be coming from and environments that distort the sound. At one point the sound even gets really loud intense and fast in ticking, sometimes also sounding a bit like an alarm. In general it’s a really unique piece to describe and I definitely like it mostly, but especially at parts where the 2 kHz gets changed up. The more progression the better with this kind of sound. So definitely a unique but challenging piece, a good listen.

Lengvai / 60 x one minute audio colours of 2 kHz is an equally fun and unique listening experience of double album. Disc 1 is more accesible and suited for repeated listening but Disc 2 also does offer a great kind of study of sound that is at point just as playful and progressive as Disc 1. In any case, this is a great creative release of glitchy sonic work by Gintas K and a good listen, so check it out for sure. Orlando Laman

via Fluid Sonic Fluctuations

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