Vortex - Rockdrill
Ambient, Minimal Alternating betwixt calm and calamity, Vortex spin a bewitching tale of palpable dread. Ominously ticking off the minutes and seconds on the clock, this individual lets his creations move fluidly across the patchwork of sounds and textures much like the infamous Vorticist sculpture his album takes it's name from. Unlike the short lived artistic movement which was Vorticism, 'Rockdrill' the the telling of tales through the medium afforded to the band: aural. There are strangely disconcerting vocal samples wryly inserted into the tracks on here which have the same quality as sandpaper. A rough, unpolished finish is how it all sounds to me, and thankfully, it works. Vortex have created for their third record a collection of caustic curios; this is quite a challenging album to listen to because it doesn't just drone along like so many other artists in this arena do.

Sometimes it is menacing, at other segments you'll be silenced by the majestically graceful yet elegiac reflections of time and space which stretch out beyond the event horizon. One fact to know which gives this work the impressive tone it has is that the creator of the rock drill gave it life as a statement to the Frankenstein we, collectively as humanity, have become. We do not know our limits nor do we have much appreciation or concern for the lives of others. When you apply this kind of history to baleful material such as this, it almost becomes overwhelming just how far from the path of hope we have drifted. Look about the world today and it is easily revealed that man's capacity for cruelty and his vindictive avarice towards his brother bear all the hallmarks of a monster unleashed.

This release could have just as easily been a meditation on the mythos of Cain, but instead, we're given a viciously confrontational essay drenched with the legacy of a species out of control and, most likely, out of time. The morbid feel of eons passing after our extinction is vividly foretold.

Sadly, the actual piece of art Vortex are basing their work on is non-existent at this point, even it's author was no fan of it and never re-constructed the creature after it's loss during the second world war. There are photos of it in abundance, however, and even the monochrome medium of the time clearly cannot disguise how wickedly seductive it looked in all of its completed glory. Vortex's musical voyage is, however, destined to endure no matter how much the man who gave life to all of it wishes he could undo it. I sit here in my dimly lit room typing up this review and can feel the waves of chills rippling through my flesh whilst listening, the volume level is incidental, the lasting effect is one of darkly reverent awe. Not to get too focused on the details but even the cover of 'Rockdrill' adheres to the stylistic eloquence of the Vorticist movement...

The illusion of motion screams across the album sleeve and all attention is drawn towards the center; a bleak all encompassing, malevolent center with no regard for the space it devours. I have many times opined on the nature of work such as this using the anecdote of a black hole carved out of the center of a star field but Vortex are the gentle first tugs of gravity which feel innocuous yet will pull you into the most lethal of atmospheres. Even though I do love what's going on throughout the duration of 'Rockdrill', the back story to this work and the movement our subject takes his name from are every bit as interesting. I suggest that anyone who wants to truly appreciate this complexly tiered auditory tome do some research and apply that knowledge to their listening sessions. You will require several. Depth and beauty regale us from within our own DNA, is it a hymn or a curse... you decide.
5
Brutal Resonance

Vortex - Rockdrill

9.0
"Amazing"
N/A
Electroracle
Spotify
Released 2011 by Cyclic Law Records
Alternating betwixt calm and calamity, Vortex spin a bewitching tale of palpable dread. Ominously ticking off the minutes and seconds on the clock, this individual lets his creations move fluidly across the patchwork of sounds and textures much like the infamous Vorticist sculpture his album takes it's name from. Unlike the short lived artistic movement which was Vorticism, 'Rockdrill' the the telling of tales through the medium afforded to the band: aural. There are strangely disconcerting vocal samples wryly inserted into the tracks on here which have the same quality as sandpaper. A rough, unpolished finish is how it all sounds to me, and thankfully, it works. Vortex have created for their third record a collection of caustic curios; this is quite a challenging album to listen to because it doesn't just drone along like so many other artists in this arena do.

Sometimes it is menacing, at other segments you'll be silenced by the majestically graceful yet elegiac reflections of time and space which stretch out beyond the event horizon. One fact to know which gives this work the impressive tone it has is that the creator of the rock drill gave it life as a statement to the Frankenstein we, collectively as humanity, have become. We do not know our limits nor do we have much appreciation or concern for the lives of others. When you apply this kind of history to baleful material such as this, it almost becomes overwhelming just how far from the path of hope we have drifted. Look about the world today and it is easily revealed that man's capacity for cruelty and his vindictive avarice towards his brother bear all the hallmarks of a monster unleashed.

This release could have just as easily been a meditation on the mythos of Cain, but instead, we're given a viciously confrontational essay drenched with the legacy of a species out of control and, most likely, out of time. The morbid feel of eons passing after our extinction is vividly foretold.

Sadly, the actual piece of art Vortex are basing their work on is non-existent at this point, even it's author was no fan of it and never re-constructed the creature after it's loss during the second world war. There are photos of it in abundance, however, and even the monochrome medium of the time clearly cannot disguise how wickedly seductive it looked in all of its completed glory. Vortex's musical voyage is, however, destined to endure no matter how much the man who gave life to all of it wishes he could undo it. I sit here in my dimly lit room typing up this review and can feel the waves of chills rippling through my flesh whilst listening, the volume level is incidental, the lasting effect is one of darkly reverent awe. Not to get too focused on the details but even the cover of 'Rockdrill' adheres to the stylistic eloquence of the Vorticist movement...

The illusion of motion screams across the album sleeve and all attention is drawn towards the center; a bleak all encompassing, malevolent center with no regard for the space it devours. I have many times opined on the nature of work such as this using the anecdote of a black hole carved out of the center of a star field but Vortex are the gentle first tugs of gravity which feel innocuous yet will pull you into the most lethal of atmospheres. Even though I do love what's going on throughout the duration of 'Rockdrill', the back story to this work and the movement our subject takes his name from are every bit as interesting. I suggest that anyone who wants to truly appreciate this complexly tiered auditory tome do some research and apply that knowledge to their listening sessions. You will require several. Depth and beauty regale us from within our own DNA, is it a hymn or a curse... you decide.
Nov 08 2011

Peter Marks

info@brutalresonance.com
Writer and contributor on Brutal Resonance

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