Inverz: My Machines
Granny Records

Recorded between autumn and winter of 2010, Inverz's My Machines spreads six slabs of electroacoustic dark ambient across two twelve-inch vinyl sides (available in 250 copies). It's the fourth release under the Inverz name by Savvas Metaxas, who's otherwise known as the guitarist in Good Luck Mr. Gorsky. It's only natural, then, that guitar figures prominently in the album's material, but, having said that, it would be misleading to characterize My Machines as a guitar-based album, as the instrument is just one of many that make up the album's sound world. As stated, Inverz's material is generally dark ambient in nature, with Metaxas drawing upon a wealth of manipulated vinyl samples as well as sounds culled from musical and non-musical sources for the album's construction. Electric and acoustic guitars, synthesizers, and field recordings constitute some of the sources Metaxas used to produce the six settings.

It wouldn't be stretching things too far to say that the album often plays like a quintessential Miasmah release, especially during those moments when cavernous, dungeon-like spaces are evoked. Consider “A Series of Tragic Events,” whose creaking noises suggest some hapless victim being strapped into a torture device, as one such example (the presence of ghoulish chantings only makes the track seem all the more unearthly). Also consistent with the Miasmah style, a neo-classical dimension emerges during the ultra-woozy “SVL” when a vocal loop swims alongside shuddering fragments of orchestral instruments. Elsewhere, macabre industrial clatterings resonate within a ghostly, crackled-infested zone during “This Machine Is Dead,” resulting in a haunted gloomscape that's like some diseased, long-buried memory welling up from the unconscious. Relatively becalmed by comparison, the final piece “About Closure” carves a ponderous path through a ruined landscape of guitar strums and violin scrapings. Those with a jones for hell-bound ambient soundscaping could do a whole lot worse than sample Inverz's plunge into the dark side.

February 2012