Welcome to Check Your Mode

The all-inclusive, ever-changing, and uncomfortably flexible guide to all things music in the 2010's.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Pantha du Prince - Black Noise: A

Say you're starving for dinner, because you've been playing a sport all day and you haven't eaten a thing since breakfast. You arrive at home and immediately plop yourself at the dinner table, where your favorite meal is being served. Your face brightens spectacularly and you serve yourself, cutting a piece of whatever that food is and holding it up to your mouth to be devoured.

Now freeze. Do you feel that savory moisture in your mouth? The one that seems to coat your gullet and swish as you move your tongue around? Try speaking; you may find that the moisture adds an increased tactile nature to your speech. That feeling of satisfaction and fulfillment that your body produces is what the definition of delicious is to your mouth as Pantha du Prince's Black Noise is to your ears.

Not a single moment of Black Noise is wasted. Although that's a given with any album, there is literally something going on at all times and different elements are constantly being worked towards your listening pleasure. Unlike other products that can say the same, you can single out each individual element of any track of Black Noise and dissect its importance to the song's whole to your liking. In other words, few other albums have sounded so complete while sounding so transparent.

Percussion is integral to the tangible nature of Black Noise. Marvelous textures are created through the use of seemingly ordinary sounds. "Ablangz" is the most prominent example, as much of the song's percussion sounds like what would have happened if you recorded yourself dumping the contents of the sea shore pictures in those "Find Five Objects" children's books on a marble floor. The song's melodies are crafted by seemingly tapping vases of various sizes all while a confident bass line coerces the song forward. At the risk of sounding like a creep, I want to note that sometimes I like to place my hands on the speakers of my laptop when listening to "Ablganz" to literally feel the track's sonic richness bubble at my fingertips.

Most of Black Noise can be characterized in the way that I just described. Moods ebb and flow, Animal Collective's Panda Bear lends his voice, and, at some point, a Frenchman rambles on about what I can only imagine is his list of sexual exploits. The album may feel a little on the long side, but that's not really a substantive qualm, because, if you give it your time, you'll be wishing Black Noise was longer.


No comments:

Post a Comment