GAS Rausch

[Kompakt; 2018]

Styles: pop ambient, anomie
Others: William Basinski, Rachel Carson

“A screaming comes across the sky. It has happened before, but there is nothing to compare it to now.”
— Thomas Pynchon, Gravity’s Rainbow (1973)

a screaming comes across the forest: quiet whistles bellow deepening the fog, seep solitude sipping the narco-silence emanating from the leaves, dissipating, shudder open like shutters shut, slam croak and fidget, the body numbing up like white noise rising up the xylem of the spine, up through the canopy, up to the sky, reflection of strobing shadows, four-on-the-forest-floor.

but Voigt’s flora wilts on Rausch, instead calcifies into concrete; towering trunks are skyscrapers that sink into tar gutters, ancient pits of pitch, fossils of decay: i-beams, wishbones, a melancholy string theory of elevator wires, as snakes tying knots around the rubble do, the quicksand of bursting sandstone, fire in the black hole of war hawk anomie, psychopathy — frenzy.

Rausch (n.)
1. flush, intoxication
2. frenzy

the sense of being overcome is central to Voigt’s psychedelic, psychotropic atmospheres: transgressive experiences not only eclipse the self, but also overcome being altogether, rendering alternate states of consciousness that break down the doors of perception to uncover new realities in familiar spaces. the sluggish, metastasizing drone of Rausch is the extreme conclusion of such intoxication, an eclipse of sanity, a subversion of objectivity: it’s a reverie in bokeh, being overcome in a haze of swift movements, a mosaic of slow-motion figments of stress and destruction in a frenzy, their echoes sketching auroras of reverberations between the trees: explosions’ fractal blooms venting emasculated burps, the tip of tumbling conifers marking minutes in the sky on the way of their decline. memory contrails — in this case — of poison.

because GAS is no mere fog, haze, or mist anymore — what it once was: a bright, fresh aura. now it’s tear gas, nerve gas, a gas leak, a gas mask. this isn’t new; it sounds familiar, a deeper foray into Narkopop’s haunting rhythms. but Rausch removes itself further from the arboreal muses of Narkopop or, at least, subverts them. Voigt & co.’s so-called pop ambient occupies the liminal space between organic and synthetic — not an exclusionary boundary, but an overlapping one — exploring the tension between prehistory and modernity at the heart of electronic music, two chambers of experience exchanging one blood, one beat, one bass: Voigt simply transposes the shivering flora, rustling fauna inhabiting past records to the tune of bio-cataclysm, symbiotic with twilight capitalism.

and Rausch is deep into that metamorphosis: organic shapes toxic, vomiting rivers of mercury — bitter-tasting, mercurial moods. the salmon in the stream are full of it. the trees discolored too, drenched in acid rain. forests on fire, puffing murky gas, noxious gas, the aroma stains of gasoline. survivors cut down, dismembered, shaped down into trim slivers, polished up and glossy as silver with resin, formed & fitted to a seat, a desk, a house, a hollow skeleton of timber, stairs climbing up the back of the spine, hardwood floors, hardwood finish at the front of your car, splinters spinning in a high-speed crash, perforating patterns on the smooth surface of your skin, highway fatalities by way of wooden injections, mementos mori.

invasion, commodification, exploitation, and consumption of the organic, and vice-versa; thus was the world created. Rausch is a portrait of nature as the birthplace of modernity, and the birthplace of modernity is here. so is the end of it.

this could just as easily be the beginning or the end.

Links: GAS - Kompakt

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