Bill Horist

Interstellar Chemistry

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    8
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Interstellar Chemistry was recorded in 2000-2001, a period during which noise guitarist K.K. Null completed many collaborative projects. The modus operandi generally consists of him laying down tracks of prepared guitar, drones, and glitchy electronics, sending the tracks to the other artist who completes them, while he is usually in charge of editing and wrapping up the album. Similar projects include Transgenic Nomad with Jon Rose, Terminal Hz with David Brown, and Freakout Modulation with Damian Catera -- all guitar or violin players. Bill Horist's take on Null's music is somewhat different, as he relies much more on rhythm and structures closer to the song format, whereas others have been more textural and musique concrète-like in their approaches. It makes Interstellar Chemistry lightly more accessible to the neophyte. But don't go thinking it's a rock or techno CD: each track has its jumps and jags, its odd layers of noise, and dangerous guitar loops; it's a far cry from anything remotely commercial. "Circular Logic," for instance, progresses toward uncontrolled noise at an irresistible pace. If "Variable Star" thumps its way into your skull, "Luminous Lullaby" takes the opposite path, letting a track of prepared guitar (evoking the sound of a gamelan ensemble) create its own new dimension. As usual in these collaborations between experimental guitarists, individual voices become blurry and subdued to the success of the album as a whole, but Horist's balance between noise and note warrants an extra recommendation.

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