broken ribs, a few
a functioning media
always ready for growth
[haiku found in old notebook extracted from a newspaper]
Ryan Huber continues his stellar work as Sujo, Diaspora being the second release of his that's come through the Scrapyard Forecast. The album meditates on a style nearly identical to that of the refined metal-gaze of 2011's Eilat, only Diaspora takes that sound and cranks it up even higher. The crackling noise at the onset of the opener "Six Days" is quickly overtaken by an onslaught of slow-hammering drums and iridescent textures. With that, the album's tone is set.
Combining metal, shoegaze and ambient seems to be Sujo's trademark. It's on display here as Huber presents movements that follow seamless arcs that build from guitar tone to form swirling masses comprised of lineal modulation, percolating filigree, and heavy drumming. As cacophonous as these masses get, they never feel beyond the control of their maker. At any point one feels Huber could take control and steer the music in a number of possible directions. This ever-presence and uncompromising grip on the reigns normally points towards heavy work in the studio, ie editing, post-production. I like to think that this isn't true in the case of Sujo, and that the music is created (at least mostly) in real time, with real instruments that play out of loud speakers and are then recorded that way. It's hard to say for certain how the music is made, but Huber's grounding in a real-time process would lend much to his skills as a musician, and the overall movement of blending respective musical styles.
In the end, categorizing and musing on how it's all done falls short in revealing the things that give music its magic. And this album is pretty magical. Limited to a mere 50 copies, with colour-printed vellum sleeves and black and navy blue insert.
Sujo - Sayan (extract) by ScrapyardForecast