Next month sees the release of a new album by Oneohtrix Point Never, Returnal.
The collection of eight tracks will be available on CD and gatefold vinyl, courtesy of Editions Mego, the esteemed Vienna-based label that has previously put out material from the likes of Russell Haswell, Prurient and KTL.
Oneohtrix Point Never is the alter ego of Daniel Lopatin. The provenance of OPN’s expansive, psychedelic synthesizer music is in some ways obvious – Tangerine Dream, Klaus Schulze, US new age obscurities – but Lopatin massages these influences into a hybrid that’s unique and, in the best possible sense, of its time. Last year’s Rifts, a double-CD collection from No Fun Productions that compiled some of the best tracks from OPN’s many limited vinyl and cassette releases, proved to be something of a cult hit, and now comes Returnal – recorded and mixed at Ridge Valley Digital, Massachusett, July-August ’09 and February ’10, it was mastered by James Plotkin and cut at Dubplates & Mastering in Berlin.
The smart cover design is by Sunn O))’s Stephen O’Malley, with photography by Yelena Avenesovan. We’ve not yet heard the record, but Mego describe it as follows:
“[Returnal] sees Lopatin fine tune his craft for creation of deep atmospheres and texture even further. Starting off with the mind blowing triptych of ‘Nil Admiari’/’Describing Bodies’/’Stress Waves’, which fires off into a noise/rhythm excess before entering a zone of relative calm building to the melancholy of the final part. This set the tone perfectly for the albums title track, a stunning out of this world ballad featuring Lopatin’s near desperate vocal delivery, ending what could be seen as one of his most chilling and thought provoking sides to date.
“ The atmosphere is slightly lifted as the darkened sun comes up over the ruins on ‘Pelham Island Road’ and ‘Where Does Time Go’, with the album closing with edgy broken beats and fourth world possible landscapes of ‘Preyouandi’, which fades into the distance with echoes of the ‘Returnal’ chorus, closing the loop. What’s burnt into memory here is Lopatin’s love affair with the long, slow path back home… the cycle… the hypnotic sector… the ghost in the machine… and whether people are making dance music or hip hop or space head music or metal, the ouroboros is present in every sector — as it was in Bach’s study, and in the elephant songs of the Ituri forests.”
Oh yeah, the elephant songs of the Ituri forest. Love them.
Pelham Island Road
Where Does Time Go