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Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Nick Forte - Pasted Lakes

Name: Nick Forte
Album: Pasted Lakes
Year: 2004
Style: Ambient Electro Experimental
Similar Bands: Ghostwriters, Aphex Twin, Manuel Gottsching
One Word Review: Chaotic Static Techno
Based Out Of: New York Ciry
Label: Schematic
 Pasted Lakes - Cover, Sleeve & Record
Pasted Lakes - Back, Sleeve, Record
Pasted Lakes (2004)
  1. Green Language 4:31
  2. Drumming in Circles 2:34
  3. Cram Corridor 1:19
  4. Sugar Lemonade 1:14
  5. Did you Feel That 1:33
  6. Thistle Rue 2:47
  7. Swallowing Gel 1:10
  8. Crack and Crevice 1:42 /
  9. Fragged 0:31
  10. Kill Your Carpet 2:26
  11. Blender Dance 3:05
  12. Forgotten Music 2:45
  13. Avenge Me 1:07
  14. Wolf Cry 3:58
  15. Join Us 2:13
Album Rating (1-10): 6.5

Members & Other Bands:
Nick Forte - Guitar, Effects, Artwork  (Rorschach, Beautiful Skin, Computer Cougar, Christmas Decorations, Felipe & Forte, Sky Dripping Venom, Hells Hills, Hamsoken, Beautiful Skin, Raspberry Bulbs, Radio to Saturn)
Stacy Wakefield - Design

Unknown-ness: I've never heard of Nick Forte. But based on the collage-like artwork, I'm guessing it is going to be an album of fun, indie songs. I like the bright colors, and am excited to hear what is on the album.

Album Review: So Nick Forte is an experimental guitar and ambient noise songwriter. He was part of the band Rorschach in the 90’s and left focusing on guitar distortion and effects. He had a lot of on-the-job training when he worked for Electro-Harmonix, testing faders, pedals and other equipment. He’s been involved with a lot of different projects and duos, with this 2004 release being his first solo record, full of ambient, electronic, and chaotic noises in mostly short spurts. It is not what I expected based on the artwork. But if I knew more about the label (who also has Crash Course in Science re-releases), I’d have known better. The song break-ups are not always easy to tell, so I’m going to go by my best assumptions, and noted song lengths.

“Green Language” features some Aphex Twin like backwards skipping stumbling horror effects and heavy marine buoy bell ringing. Haunting synth lines float along in the background, mixed with echoing guitar licks. The skipping effects give out to the end for a segment, but come back in, stuttering and spitting.
“Drumming in Circles” starts with a synthetic steel plinking ball bouncing around pinball bumpers. Drum raps sound like old fashioned scorecard flipping around, and haunting deep see notes reverberate, echoing loud to soft. The pattern of the ball sounds comes and go, while the submarine pings continue
“Cram Corridor” is a stretching and shifting of time and space effect, combined with static charges pulsating trying to break through to stay consistent.
“Sugar Lemonade” sounds like the thump-thumping of a brotastic club beat heard muffled through the walls. It is kind of back-skipping with pauses where it comes up for air to maintain a solid note.
“Did You Feel That” is an onslaught of heavy gurgling sound, with a nice, skipping wood block beat as the tempo.
“Thistle Rue” starts with a straight forward house four-beat. It becomes manipulated, and fractured, all while trying to maintain itself. It becomes muffled and still struggles to maintain consistency. Synthetic twsiting and growing steel beam sounds are brought into the rhythm, and cause necessary chaos, and it ends abruptly.
“Swallowing Gel” is a chaotic mashing of watery, gurgling sound clay, while a bouncing racket/pong ball rebounds around in the background.
“Crack and Crevice” slowly grows like an infrared light shining on things beyond the visible light spectrum. There is jitteriness to the growing tone, and scene jump cut sound effects are layered over as dstraction.

“Fragged” is a short haunting crystal, tone, quickly taken over by murky, slowed down revving.
“Kill Your Carpet” continues with the that slowed revving sound as if filtered through plasma. Crashing, crushing tinny effects are placed over the rev-hum, and skitter and dance around in the foreground in heavy, unforgiving overcoats. Echo chamber static hums begin to take over at the end, and if in battle with the bouncing, cruch-thumps
“Blender Dance” begins as a pulsing electronic washing machine grows louder. Static charges are emitted in the background, and highway cars pass by to create only a bit section of the Doppler effect. As if coming through from an adjacent radio station, a delicate simple drum beat tries to gain footing in the mix.
“Forgotten Music” sounds like electric pulses strumming a rubber band to a definite beat. Haunting organ notes rise and fall slowly in the background.
“Avenge Me” is a short skittering of static and a looping Rube Goldbergian sound effect. An echoing zoob tube sound is added just toward the end.
“Wolf Cry” has a lurching video game sound effect of pong bouncing back and forth, picking up speed between the oscillations. The volley finds a constant pace, and the knobs are twittered ever so slightly to create different tones with each connection. In the background is the standard haunting base that rises and falls. The volley stops and starts as if it is playing through a channel that can’t bring in the picture quality well, and is filtered through static. The station is changed back for the last 20 seconds or so for a very clear sound.
“Join Us” could be seen as a haunting spaceship landing slowly in a cold winter field. Haunting wind gusts funnel through the large UFO, as the landing system pulses. The sound moans and wales, like whale mating calls in the deep.

This is not an album I would seek out and put on, but I enjoyed the frantic, yet relaxing vibe it emits, and I enjoyed the remarking about and visualizing the instruments and sounds.

Stand Out Track: Avenge Me / Wolf Cry

Links:
Allmusic
Official Site
Discogs
Schematic interview

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