MARK WASTELL – Come Crimson Rays

(Kning Disk)

Third and last instalment of a series of solo tam tam albums – the previous parts being the two Vibra volumes – Come Crimson Rays symbolizes one of those instances in which I’m truly at a loss for helpful words to describe what should be considered more the extension of a state of mind, or a physical aid, than sheer music. Wastell used a 32-inch Paiste to record three movements of progressively diminishing length (the first and the third gravitating around the sub-bass area, the second with a slight opening of the frequencies towards the low-to-medium range) which the human ear, if aptly trained to this kind of emission, receive as “presence” rather than “notes”. A few barely detectable touches are enough to transform the surrounding space into a container of curative throbs whose vibrating patterns change according to the position of our head while slowly pacing the place, just like when visiting an installation. Walls and roof contribute to a continuous rebound of these humming, yet impalpable entities. If you’re sealed into a room the whole could even generate a sort of aural “oppression” which – if you ask me – is wonderful, as one feels like being invaded by that particular sense of displacement which doesn’t pretend to be the product of a rite but whose grace is able to lift a body up, if only for a few moments. Trying to mix the sounds generated by Wastell with the ones that the universe lets loose randomly produces great results, should we accidentally find the right balance among the parts; in one of my sessions, the pairing between the gong’s unearthly rumble and a light rain at one point was just perfect. Whatever side one looks at it, Come Crimson Rays is required listening.


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