[sic] Magazine

Psychic Sounds Ensemble – Sonic Fermentations

A supergroup of Portland’s most avant-garde psychedelic performers, the Psychic Sounds Ensemble comprises Ju Suk Reet Meate, Oblivia and David Morgan of Smegma, Birch Cooper and Brenna Murphy of MSHR, as well as Grant Corum and Suzanne Stone of Million Brazilians. And it’s that experimental Million Brazilians project that [sic] readers will likely most be familiar with, having featured on these pages a number of times, their free-form rituals still reverberating across the flux of space and time for the already initiated.

Similarly humid, Sonic Fermentations is presented in two lengthy batches, lonely flute and suffocating sax meandering against an exotic backdrop of weirdo drones, knife sharpening and percussive tics and clatter. Painful laser whistles excoriate the ear drum, mournful bowing of double bass and gong splashes oddly soothing in counterpoint, this first batch a serious strain of retro-futurist jungle-jazz heavy on hallucinogens.

On the flip, crackling radio static and a promotional spoken sample are strangely jarring in such dank surroundings, Eastern-tinged brass wailing like a New Age call to prayer. Watery effects and low bass groans haunt the fringes of sanity, throat-croaked frog noise, percussive plucking and scraped strings pushing you over the edge. A creepy, undulating soundtrack to some sci-fi horror, it’ll stand the hairs up on the back of your neck as you breathe in its dark energy deeply.

~Sonic Fermentations is out now via Psychic Sounds.~