Sometimes an album makes us stop downloading MP3s for a second and start reminiscing about another record. Here’s one of them…
The Artist/Album: bvdub, The Art of Dying Alone (Glacial Movements, 2010)
The Record It Reminds Us Of: William Basinski, The Disintegration Loops I (2062, 2001)
The Story Behind the Songs: While they’re a stunning listen in and of themselves, William Basinski’s Disintegration Loops series (there are four volumes) comes with a weighty backstory. The result of restored magnetic tape recordings from 1982, the tracks feature digitally-transferred loops that literally dropped out as Basinski layered them into lengthy soundscape pieces. That’s not the kicker, though. It’s this: The project was finished the morning of September 11, in a Brooklyn apartment across the river from the Twin Towers.
It goes without saying that Basinski’s work takes on a whole other level of solemnity once you understand the circumstances behind each willfully-distorted cut. Whether or not bvdub’s new record is the result of his own personal strife seems to go without saying, what with its The Art of Dying Alone title and all. At any rate, we’ve always been a sucker for the kind of chilly, heart-sinking ambient artistry that’s on display here. Seriously, this stuff is so good it makes us want to roll ourselves into a ball and cry uncontrollably for no reason other than the simple fact that the songs demand it.