PYRE Ambient, Noise Glice Glice is a duo of ambient and noise musicians formed by Ruben Braeken and Melle Kromhout. Their debut album "LIX" released in 2015 and was followed up by "CIELO" in 2017. They have also released two splits with label mate Coen Oscar Polack in 2017 and 2019, alongside a trio of live recordings titled "FLEISCH". Their latest opus is a double-album titled "PYRE" which Glice has separated into two parts; tracks one through five is titled "PART I - CLEAVE" and tracks six through thirteen are titled "PART II - COALESCENCE". While the album is ambitious, I found myself having mixed and middling thoughts on the experimental sounds found within. PYRE by GliceThe intro track 'Saudade' did little to encourage me to dive into the rest of the album; a soft rumble turns into a repetitious sound that does nothing more than move to a silent noise before transitioning to the next track, 'Blood Sky'. The first two or so minutes of that track is standard ambient noise than can be found on half-a-dozen similar releases, but what's interesting is when I got into the meat of the song. Loud and raucous rumbles pulse in and out as chords from a backing guitar provide the soundtrack to something ominous. Further into 'Blood Sky', around the three-minute and four-second mark, a paranoia-inducing sound continued to unsettle me. Whatever high pitched oscillation that Glice used around the four-and-a-half minute mark was unnecessary and ruined the trance that I found myself in when I was listening to the song. It made me want to toss off my headphones and never look back. A less than interesting track follows up titled 'Three Bones'. Again, standard ambient noise is the focus of this release with static being a primary focus and what sounds like spoken word samples plays in the background. It lasts for around six minutes, but the most interesting section in the track comes a little after the three minute mark when an amalgamation of experimental sounds continuously rupture the standard sound design that 'Three Bones' originally presented. It sounded like a radio out of hell. The next track on the album, 'a screw falls to the ground', actually sounds less than how the title described it and more like a sample of an old WWII plane flying in the sky in an old, black and white film from the fifties or sixties. Some eerie synths back the noise, but it's another less than stellar piece. 'Constantinople, 541 CE' is the longest track on the album and lasts for twenty-six minutes in total. Blackened guitars straight out of a black metal project begin off the song and continue to reign for quite a while. Epic synths back this and ancient joins the fray towards the end of the five-minute mark. To me, the song becomes undesirable when the eighteen-minute and fifty-second mark hits. High pitched sounds play out and made me want to toss my headphones off. The unpredictable nature as to the end of the track was interesting, but there was not a sound or design choice that made me want to stick through the rest of the song till the end. The last couple of minutes are filled to the brim with a harsh noise wall, and it was just boring and similar to so many other harsh noise walls I've heard in the past. The following track, 'Gold-Bug', is peaceful but at the same time it is underwhelming for an ambient / noise piece. I once again find myself thinking of other acts in the same field who are able to create a much more mesmerizing piece than what I found on this song. 'Rays' actually caught me by surprise as I found the haunted-wind-chime sound of the song to be quite good. As with a lot of their other pieces, however, Glice fails to keep the sound interesting by reverting back to walls of noise to accompany of the final moments of the song. I could continue to dissect the rest of the album, but I do think that it's time for me to stop and be bluntly honest about "PYRE". While there are sections of Glice's "PYRE" that I do find awe-inspiring and phenomenal at the noise level, for every praise that I have I find two or more complaints. It is more or less a repeated journey of enthusiasm to disappointment and ultimately lands in an ocean of apathy. There is not a single song on "PYRE" that I could listen to from start to end while being completely engrossed in both the detail and structure of Glice's sound design. Instead I constantly found myself enjoying a few minutes of one song only to find myself wanting to turn it off the next couple of minutes. A majority of the issue comes from Glice's inconsistency and their lack of innovation. When they are developing a great sound, they fall back to clichés and tried and true - but nonetheless worthless - tropes of the noise genre. If I want to listen to a noise wall, I can go to any of the other countless acts who can provide me with the same meditative pitch as Glice. And that is where the lack of innovation comes in to play; I just don't see a reason to return to Glice over other bands in the noise genre. I find some parts good, some parts bad, and ultimately I'm stuck in between a rock and a hard place. My opinion on this album lingers in limbo as I neither hate it nor do I care for it; rather, I find myself indifferent. And it is for those reasons and the reasons that I have stated above that I give "PYRE" a five out of ten. This review was commissioned through our Ko-fi page. 350
Brutal Resonance

Glice - PYRE

5.0
"Mediocre"
Released off label 2021
Glice is a duo of ambient and noise musicians formed by Ruben Braeken and Melle Kromhout. Their debut album "LIX" released in 2015 and was followed up by "CIELO" in 2017. They have also released two splits with label mate Coen Oscar Polack in 2017 and 2019, alongside a trio of live recordings titled "FLEISCH". Their latest opus is a double-album titled "PYRE" which Glice has separated into two parts; tracks one through five is titled "PART I - CLEAVE" and tracks six through thirteen are titled "PART II - COALESCENCE". While the album is ambitious, I found myself having mixed and middling thoughts on the experimental sounds found within. 



The intro track 'Saudade' did little to encourage me to dive into the rest of the album; a soft rumble turns into a repetitious sound that does nothing more than move to a silent noise before transitioning to the next track, 'Blood Sky'. The first two or so minutes of that track is standard ambient noise than can be found on half-a-dozen similar releases, but what's interesting is when I got into the meat of the song. Loud and raucous rumbles pulse in and out as chords from a backing guitar provide the soundtrack to something ominous. Further into 'Blood Sky', around the three-minute and four-second mark, a paranoia-inducing sound continued to unsettle me. Whatever high pitched oscillation that Glice used around the four-and-a-half minute mark was unnecessary and ruined the trance that I found myself in when I was listening to the song. It made me want to toss off my headphones and never look back. 

A less than interesting track follows up titled 'Three Bones'. Again, standard ambient noise is the focus of this release with static being a primary focus and what sounds like spoken word samples plays in the background. It lasts for around six minutes, but the most interesting section in the track comes a little after the three minute mark when an amalgamation of experimental sounds continuously rupture the standard sound design that 'Three Bones' originally presented. It sounded like a radio out of hell. The next track on the album, 'a screw falls to the ground', actually sounds less than how the title described it and more like a sample of an old WWII plane flying in the sky in an old, black and white film from the fifties or sixties. Some eerie synths back the noise, but it's another less than stellar piece. 

'Constantinople, 541 CE' is the longest track on the album and lasts for twenty-six minutes in total. Blackened guitars straight out of a black metal project begin off the song and continue to reign for quite a while. Epic synths back this and ancient joins the fray towards the end of the five-minute mark. To me, the song becomes undesirable when the eighteen-minute and fifty-second mark hits. High pitched sounds play out and made me want to toss my headphones off. The unpredictable nature as to the end of the track was interesting, but there was not a sound or design choice that made me want to stick through the rest of the song till the end. The last couple of minutes are filled to the brim with a harsh noise wall, and it was just boring and similar to so many other harsh noise walls I've heard in the past. 

The following track, 'Gold-Bug', is peaceful but at the same time it is underwhelming for an ambient / noise piece. I once again find myself thinking of other acts in the same field who are able to create a much more mesmerizing piece than what I found on this song. 'Rays' actually caught me by surprise as I found the haunted-wind-chime sound of the song to be quite good. As with a lot of their other pieces, however, Glice fails to keep the sound interesting by reverting back to walls of noise to accompany of the final moments of the song. 

I could continue to dissect the rest of the album, but I do think that it's time for me to stop and be bluntly honest about "PYRE". While there are sections of Glice's "PYRE" that I do find awe-inspiring and phenomenal at the noise level, for every praise that I have I find two or more complaints. It is more or less a repeated journey of enthusiasm to disappointment and ultimately lands in an ocean of apathy. There is not a single song on "PYRE" that I could listen to from start to end while being completely engrossed in both the detail and structure of Glice's sound design. Instead I constantly found myself enjoying a few minutes of one song only to find myself wanting to turn it off the next couple of minutes. 

A majority of the issue comes from Glice's inconsistency and their lack of innovation. When they are developing a great sound, they fall back to clichés and tried and true - but nonetheless worthless - tropes of the noise genre. If I want to listen to a noise wall, I can go to any of the other countless acts who can provide me with the same meditative pitch as Glice. And that is where the lack of innovation comes in to play; I just don't see a reason to return to Glice over other bands in the noise genre. I find some parts good, some parts bad, and ultimately I'm stuck in between a rock and a hard place. My opinion on this album lingers in limbo as I neither hate it nor do I care for it; rather, I find myself indifferent. And it is for those reasons and the reasons that I have stated above that I give "PYRE" a five out of ten. 

This review was commissioned through our Ko-fi page.
Mar 06 2021

Off label

Official release released by the artist themselves without the backing of a label.

Steven Gullotta

info@brutalresonance.com
I've been writing for Brutal Resonance since November of 2012 and now serve as the editor-in-chief. I love the dark electronic underground and usually have too much to listen to at once but I love it. I am also an editor at Aggressive Deprivation, a digital/physical magazine since March of 2016. I support the scene as much as I can from my humble laptop.

Share this review

Facebook
Twitter
Google+
0
Shares

Buy this release

Bandcamp

Related articles

The Dreaming

Interview, Dec 22 2014

Microwaved - 'Jesse'

Review, May 01 2015

Shortly about us

Started in spring 2009, Brutal Resonance quickly grew from a Swedish based netzine into an established International zine of the highest standard.

We cover genres like Synthpop, EBM, Industrial, Dark Ambient, Neofolk, Darkwave, Noise and all their sub- and similar genres.

© Brutal Resonance 2009-2016
Designed by and developed by Head of Mímir 2016