Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Host: A Brief Profile

Now that my college semester is over, I have the time to focus on things that help me relax. Luckily for all of us, listening to new music and sharing it with the masses is pretty much my favorite thing to do. To get things started in a proper fashion, here's a brief profile of ritual noise artist, Host along with a download link or two for your enjoyment and enrichment. This artist directly contacted me a few months ago and my scatterbrained nature during my semester prevented me from giving a proper review, although I'd enjoyed the album he initially sent. Apparently my constant delays due to school and personal life worked out nicely for my readers, as he's since released an experimental track of sorts and has another album coming out in the very near future.

Host's first release with which I am acquainted, "Implant," is a journey of some sort, perhaps into and through the singularity. The futuristic beauty and horror that play with each other sound like the perfect soundtrack for a sci-fi film of technological advances gone wrong. Disconcerting drones buzz alongside chirping, somewhat tonal electronic textures with minimal to no percussion yet the music definitely does have its own structure. I'm always into a bit of melody or tonality making its way into noise and ambient structures, and Host does a great job of integrating accessible sounds into noisy soundscapes, creating a fantastic atmosphere. This album had my full attention and appreciation within the first minute, and I imagine it'll do the same for most of my readers who have appreciated my noise-related posts in the past. If you're still hesitant to hop on the noise/electronic train, this might actually be a pretty good starting point due to the genre-straddling nature of this release. Grab this one as a free download from Host's bandcamp page to start your journey into one of our many possible futures.

Following the crumbling beauty of "Implant" is Host's current experiment, "Evolution." This song is going to be hard to explain, as everybody has their own wholly unique experience. "Evolution" uses samples from Host's upcoming release, "Null Pointer," and combines them with random number generation, live financial, meteorological, and social data in order to manipulate the sound and alter the experience for every listener. I will admit to only perusing this potentially endless experiment once so far, although I do plan on visiting with it again. My personal experience is that of an endless series of pistons, churning ever onward with mechanical precision. It's dark, relentless, and I love it. Experience it for yourself and be sure to bookmark the page for your own future excursions. This might be the future of music, so don't be surprised if other artists start doing things like this soon.

After immersing myself in "Evolution" for about ten minutes, I feel prepared to present and review Host's impending release, "Null Pointer." Following the apparent trend of growing in size, intensity, and scope, this album's three tracks each pass the ten-minute mark and shed much of the electronic tonality in favor of cavernous low-frequency drones. Even the tiniest of sounds echoes into a seemingly infinite void. True to the album's title, it seems that everything converges somewhere immeasurably distant, with everything fading into a dull hum that never fully reaches a resolution. The mechanical churning I described in "Evolution" surfaces here as intermittent static, swelling to fill empty space left as each previous noise falls farther from audible levels. This album is more experiential than musical, which is not to say that it can't be listened to for the sake of listening, but the massive amount of detail and texture here make this ideal material for a session with headphones in a darkened room. As the last crackle of static fades into oblivion, we are left with nothing but ever-lengthening echoes for the final minute or two, giving a rare moment of peaceful closure that leads to a contemplative silence that I find most appropriate after such an experience.

It should go without saying that Host is an artist to watch in months to come, as this project has already released a handful of solid releases and seems prepared to continue putting out new noise at a considerable pace. "Null Pointer" will be released on the 27th of May, which gives us just under three weeks to prepare. As the music continues to change form and approach with each release, I can only imagine that whatever comes next will be equally engaging and rewarding to dedicated noise fans and casual listeners of drone alike.

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