Source Code X- Primordial Lands Arise
(Private Release)

From Aural Innovations #38 (Jan 2008)

Deep, dark ambient soundscapes comprise this intriguing release by John W. Patterson, otherwise known as SourceCodeX. To quote the composer himself, “Primordial Lands Arise is linked to descriptions and/or visions of…Sheol, the Underworld, Hell, Gehenna, outer darkness or the Abyss.” Patterson conjures some disturbing sounds from his infernal machines—sounds that often border on the edge of serenity but which always seem to be warped or mangled in such a way as to produce strange resonances that evoke melancholia and a sense of lingering malaise. Only occasionally is there any melodic center that the listener can grasp onto; otherwise, Patterson revels in cavernous tones with no definite pitch or rhythm. This approach is particularly effective on the longer, extended pieces (“Hidden Things between Things” and “Vain Traditions Abyss”) where snatches of Gregorian choirs and other ancient sound sources fight and flail against the industrialized sounds of clanking machinery and jet airplanes. As a consequence, primordial Lands Arise can be favorably compared with such ambient industrial works as Jeff Greinke’s Cities in Fog and Lustmord’s The Place Where the Black Stars Hang. If not blindingly original, Primordial Lands Arise at least has the virtue of being well-conceived and carefully executed. Aficionados of the darker side of ambient electronics will find primordial lands Arise worth a listen.

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Reviewed by Charles Van de Kree

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