Belsona Strategic

Previously active as The Domestic Front, Thom Bailey is an intensely thinking man who seriously questions himself before the emission of any sound or word (check out his recent book MicroBionic, a fascinating read about the farthest fringes of sonically alternative design). For the first CD under his actual name, he chose a title taken from particle physics, “a strangelet being a hypothetical object which converts ordinary matter into ‘strange matter’ through liberating the energy of nuclei that it comes into collision with”. It would take some balls to classify these tracks as “noise”, although Bailey utilizes sounds at the very extremes of audibility. Large chunks of this music work by dredging up the listener’s memories and associations, though the composer – intelligently and somewhat heartlessly – tends to cut away at the exact moment one starts getting used to things. What begins as disturbing interference becomes a blurred remembrance in few instants; by the time another minute has passed everything has become thoroughly garbled, reduced to infinitesimal granules of distortion. The record shows discipline and logic at the same time that it constantly displaces itself, existing in a state of “perpetual becoming” (in Bailey’s words). Rarely has a concoction of bewildering electronic sequences, unsympathetic intermissions and catatonic underground chorales sounded so coherent. Keep an eye on this guy.