Watching a symphony very slowly tune-up through a thin wall of haze; trying to tune into an audio music channel through poor reception and white static… two of the first things that come to mind when playing the new release by the mysterious project, The Spiritual Switchboard. Today we have for your their new ltd. edition album/tape All Else Is Error/Oscilloclast courtesy of Endangered Species.
From Bandcamp: “This is a darker journey, into greater uncertainty. They sounds are uncomfortable, laden with anxiety, and the grinding noise we are left with, does nothing to comfort the existential dread. Yet, its that dread that makes this work important, and very much a sign of the times.”
What we DO know about this project and this release is that it presents a very different/unique approach to mixing minimal noise and ambient/drone structures. Think of it like watching life slowly passing by from a static prison wall; you have the moving and the stationary-two different levels at the same time.
Each side of the tape has a track clocking in at just over 12 minutes, 30 seconds a piece. Both are sonically very similar. However, as just noted, the over-all presentation is quite unique. A minimal static noise remains in the foreground with layers of ambient/drone sounds in the slight distance. The foreground noise has an effect on the ambient portion in an odd way. It forces the ambient fields to appear sort of lateral from left to right. It’s like the viewer stationed behind a thin but impenetrable plane viewing a sea in the distance. All the while, the ambient textures rise and fall like slowly cresting and receding waves and create their own tones and chords when mixed. So, herein is an excellent multi-dimensional perspective that the artist gives the listener.
It makes one wonder if that was the idea behind the name of the project. But then “wonder” is subjective and so is our guessing. But let us give some thought to the idea that The Spiritual Switchboard might refer to the concept of interceding between this world and the next. Or perhaps it’s the mediator between harshness and delicacy, abrasiveness’ caress and a sonic ocean’s submergence.
Whichever… All Else is Error/Oscilloclast also gives reason for lovers of noise and ambient/drone work to come together just as the sounds. It’s comfort and discomfort living oddly harmoniously.
The release is limited to 50 tape copies and is also available as a digital release.
Below you’ll find an article on The Spiritual Switchboard.
Please note that at this time, no video was available for tracks on this current release. However, we included below a track so that you could get some idea of what The Sonic Switchboard sounds like. Please refer to the Bandcamp page for samples from the current release.