04 March 2005


ZIQ096CDHere's something for those who fancy a challenge. Working under the name Phthalocyanine is Dimitri Fergadis from LA, and "No One Said You Didn't" is his second full-length release on Mu. I've been trying to get to grips with this album for two months now and I'm still scratching my head over it. It's either completely brilliant or a load of nonsense, but I can't quite decide. At it's heart lies the pounding velocity of Gabba, but slurred and strangulated through the lens of broken-glitch-fuckery to the point where it becomes an abstract, ever-shifting vortex of queer sensations and unfathomable grooves that ties my brain in knots and makes me fear for my sanity if I play it too much.

But if initially a rather daunting 70 minutes, this is one of those albums that definitely rewards repeated listens, as all kinds of unusual sonic artifacts emerge from the mix the deeper you delve into it. You also begin to notice that there's a certain dark humour at work too. Tracks 6 & 7 are grouped together as "Sitcom At A Funeral", which is an image that fits rather perfectly I think. Get past the cloying waves of synthetic stress on "Rosemary" and there's actually a sort of slapstick quality, complete with burps, screams and unexplained bleeting sheep near the end, that's actually rather funny in a weird way. It's as though Fergadis is trying to tell an amusing anecdote through the medium of sound...you don't get the specifics, just the vague outlines.

The sly humour comes out in other ways too, in the the subtle little touches like the end section of "Sewer System Shrapnel" that I swear must be a cheeky reference to T99's Belgian hardcore classic "Anasthasia". The beauty of this album for electronica fans on a tight budget is that you'll get plenty of user value out of it, just trying make sense of it all. Buy! Download! (if you dare...)