up here in the clouds…


Gordon Sharp’s Cindytalk returns with another new long-player for the mighty Editions Mego imprint , a follow-up to last year’s The Crackle Of My Soul. ‘Up Here In The Clouds’ might well be said to bear as close a resemblance to ambient music as it does noise, and while much of the record plays out as a slow influx of electronically cultivated texture – largely divorced from the usual musical languages of pitch and rhythm – there is an uneasy kind of prettiness to Cindytalk’s new sound. Making for an enticing opener, ‘The Eighth Sea’ could either be based upon undulating, watery field recordings or computer-generated waves of static, or maybe both merged together in some strange electroacoustic broth. In amongst the piece’s hypnotic motions a female vocal sample emerges (sounding naggingly like those heard during DJ Shadow’s ‘Midnight In A Perfect World’). It’s an enigmatic, slightly tense introduction, setting up ‘We Are Without Words’, with its skewering drones, ear-tickling interference signals and factory floor knocking sounds. ‘Guts Of London’ offers another immersive, heavily layered and abstract mix – the album’s sonic properties are always to be admired, in fact, pieced together with a thoughtful, craftsman-like skill. That’s not to say that Up Here In The Clouds steers clear of the more confrontational end of noise music altogether: ‘Hollow Stare’ lets loose with a compressed, piercing screech of Daniel Menche proportions, while the throaty, trundling passages of ‘I Walk Until I Fall’ are interspersed with Prurient-esque atavistic vocal exclamations. Towards the close of the sequence, nine-minuter ‘Multiple Landings’ brews up a doomy intermingling of glossy, metallic drones, ratcheting up a general air of industrial dread. Any sense of ill will disperses with the album’s closing two minutes (its title track) which sound like a mournful fax machine bleating out a rather lovely melody. Highly recommended.

Norman Records 
Cindytalk is somewhat of a rotating cast centering around Gordon Sharp, who I thought came across as being a wonderful spirit in his recent interview in The Wire. These recordings were created between 2003-2010. This sounds great from the moment I hit play. It’s difficult to tell if the sounds of waves across a shore are field recordings that have been processed or purely synthetic. Meanwhile ghostly tones hover above opener ‘The Eighth Sea’. Onto ‘We Are Without Words’ which really grows building tension and a sort of slightly uncomfortable Euphoria. ‘I Walk Until I Fall’ has a howling digital wind with superb cracked electronics and glitched up textures. Then some super imaginative sound design enters the mix. I could waffle on all day about this so I’ll stop now. Like any really decent electronic music, it is beyond words and should be experienced rather than talked about. Highly recommended.

Après le radical “The Crackle of my soul” (2009), Cindytalk revient avec un nouvel album aux couleurs toujours aussi noise-industrielles; la “laptop music” explorée ainsi forme un univers singulier, plus intimiste que ce que le groupe propose sur scène. Pour autant “Up here in the clouds” se démarque subtilement du précédent album, souvent plus floconneux, atmosphérique aux lentes respirations, secoué d’infra-spasmes, idéalement suspendu entre déséquilibre et harmonie.
Tout au long des neuf compositions (dont “Guts Of London”, originellement présent sur le 7″ “Transgender Warrior”), l’oreille se fraye un chemin dans des paysages tour à tour microscopiques ou étendus dans un territoire inconnu, comme vierges de toute présence humaine. On pense alors à un “monde d’après”, à des espaces rendus à une Nature mutante, fragments de technologies mortes instillés dans les éléments du sol, racines et terre compostées en un substrat post-industriel.
Parfois le rythme s’installe plus ostensiblement, sur “The anarchist window”, mais cela s’inscrit toujours dans la veine presque rituelle de l’ensemble de l’album.
Apesanteur ployée sous des nimbulosités, inquiétude calfeutrée sous de grands calmes. Exigeante poésie, si lumineuse, si familière de l’abîme, à tomber.
Bientôt édité en double album vinyle, couplé à “The crackle of my soul”, cette nouvelle pièce sonore de Cindytalk devrait être suivie d’un album “en groupe” qui montrera l’autre face du projet de Gordon Sharp.
Stanislas C.
jeudi 26 août 2010

After the radical ‘The Crackle Of My Soul’ (2009), Cindytalk comes back with a new album, still tinged with noise-industrial tones ; such “laptop music” creates a singular world, more intimate than what the band offers on stage. Yet  “Up Here In The Clouds”  subtly differs from the previous album, often snowy, atmospheric with long breathes, shaken by infra-spasms, ideally suspended between imbalance and harmony.All through the nine tracks (including “Guts Of London” previously on the “Transgender Warrior” single), the listener explores landscapes which are alternatively microscopic or wide open in unknown territory, as if free from any human presence. Hence one imagines “an afterworld”, spaces given back to some mutating Nature, debris of dead technologies instilled in the earth, roots and dust fertilized into post-industrial substrata.Sometimes the rhythm becomes more visible as on “The Anarchist Window”, but it’s always inscribed in the quasi ritualistic tone of the whole album.Curved weightlessness, fears hidden under great calmness. Demanding poetry, full of light, so close to the abyss, poetry to fall for.Soon issued on double album vinyl with “The Crackle Of My Soul”,this new sonic work by Cindytalk will hopefully be followed by a “full band” album that will show us the other side of Gordon Sharp’s Project….

Tracklist :
+ The Eighth Sea
+ We Are Without Words
+ I Walk Until I Fall
+ Guts Of London
+ Switched To Lunar
+ Hollow Stare
+ The Anarchist Window
+ Multiple Landings
+ Up Here In The Clouds