Gog, the brainchild of
San Francisco's Michael Bjella,
formerly of Unruh and Wellington,
concocted the doom trance of
Noriah Mills (Sounds Of Battle And Souvenir Collecting, 2006).
Hovering Lake is a simple concerto for
hyper-elongated, fragile and evanescent bass drones, like a solo for Himalayan
singing bowls. This appetizer hardly prepares for the real meal,
the 21-minute Noriah Mills, that consists of a massive surf of
distorted guitar riffs. Halfway into the piece it mutates into a more or less
steady vibration with drums punctuating the minimal variations. Then suddenly
it explodes, the riffs becoming loud, anguished, raga-style invocations coupled
with forceful drumbeats. The guitar repeats its melodic theme to the end
while the emphasis subsides.
Past The Deepest Gate (Sounds Of Battle And Souvenir Collecting, 2007)
contains four pieces:
The Invaders Have A Search Beam,
The View From Under A Rock,
Past The Deepest Gate,
The Biggest Thing Ever.
Mist From The Random More (Utech Records, 2009) used more sophisticated
tools to achieve a more claustrophobic quality.
Gasp In A Fifty Pound Claw uses a few minutes of
frenzied cricket-like chirping to prepare the landing of a booming and roaring
drum-guitar task force.
Night Zoe is a colossal
glissando that never delivers the anthemic riff that it promises.
Most of the mini-album is taken up by the
23-minute Mist From The Random More in which the guitar unleashes
a thick pulsating sideral distortion. The noise increases, punctuated by
more and more aggressive drums, Then, when the spasm is subsiding,
the bass evokes a simple psychedelic litany while the main distortion
is still burning the air. As the latter picks up momentum, the two merge
in an hypothetical infinite horizon.
Mist From The Random More is the quintessential doomgaze manifesto.
Heavy Fierce Brightness (Sounds Of Battle And Souvenir Collecting, 2010)
collects two soundtracks for an art installation,
Dragged By A Black Cat and
Heavy Fierce Brightness.
The former takes off with an ominous rumble inhabited by creepy noises and
slowly morphs into a heavily distorted orgy, louder and louder, the drone
disintegrating as it swells to giant proportions, About halfway the whole
monster disappears, leaving behind only a feeble vibration, similar to one
of Alvin Lucier's stationary sounds,
except that it is a moving vortex that absorbs all energy until only a
distant whisper is left.
The second piece, one of Gog's peaks of pathos,
is almost its mirror image because it begins with a whisper
and builds up to an almost choral intensity which then turns into a slow-motion
explosion of glissandoes. This rain of guitar-like distortion, however,
coalesces into a mantra-like invocation the way
Jimi Hendrix could have done.
Music for the installation also appeares on
Heavy Fierce Brightness: Spells Of The Sun (Utech, 2010),
notably The Opening and Heavy Fierce Brightness.
The double EP In Our Architecture This Resounds (King Of The Monsters, 2012) consists of four 45 RPM suites that run the gamut from gloomy
industrial music to ethereal ambient music.
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