JIM O’ROURKE – It’s The Story All Night

Steamroom

For starters, let it be reminded that last year Jim O’Rourke produced one of the best song-based records heard by this narrator in his entire life (Simple Songs, if you just came back from Uranus). A timeless masterpiece of resonant maturity that, coming from anyone else, would have sufficed for the totality of a career in a classic case of “resting on laurels” inactivity.

But Jim being Jim, we know better. And he knows better, for our good luck. From the outset of the Steamroom Bandcamp page (late 2013) to date, we have been treated with no less than twenty-five full albums of unfathomable-to-essential material. Some of them comprise long out-of-print tracks – naturally remastered for the occasion – that had appeared on earlier titles such as Remove The Need. The newest proposals are equally likely to increase salivation in the loyal followers. O’Rourke’s deftness in distilling refinement from whatever gets processed into composition is well known; the inclusion of a Serge modular synthesizer to facilitate acoustic illumination was the proverbial icing on the cake.

It’s The Story All Night is dedicated to Jaap Vink, a composer who used to work in close contact with Roland Kayn. On the surface, this is a single 40-minute slab of gradually morphing electronic matter self-developing into a veritable homage to the dismemberment and consequent enhancement of normal tones. In the guts of its burbling frequencies and hypercharged signals, though, one can notice innumerable stages of micro-organic lives at different levels of evolution. The significance of the resulting integrity lies in the healthy contradiction between the ceaseless proliferation of particles and the calmness conveyed by this balmy magma. Infinite are the points of observation and the changes of shape in the textural aggregate; the risk of remaining trapped inside a sequence of hallucinations is concrete. On the other hand – if the listener’s lucidity prevails, a probable event given this music’s target – score another point for those who find all the necessary answers within and around Sound, not asking convoluted questions only to receive the shallowness of inexistent knowledge as a “gift”.

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