Neil Scrivin is an electronic musician operating under the Phono Ghosts and Meatbingo pseudonyms. Stars And Rumours Of Stars collects together tracks recorded in 2004, and the merest glance at the sleeve gives you a clue as to what the mood of the eight unreleased tracks included on Scrivin’s latest cassette might sound like.
Opening track ‘Skywatch’ is a edgy affair, full of overlapping synth tones and a central structure full of mournful texture. There is a resigned, thwarted atmosphere to Scrivin’s opening gesture, only for tracks like the hyperactive squelch and buzz of ‘Omni Voyager’ and ‘Granular Occlusion’ to move the dynamic squarely into territory that nods to sci-fi-inflected electro, while simultaneously sitting in a sort of underexplored no man’s land between industrial drama and ambient sensitivity.
The album pivots on the shrouded of ‘The Power Of The Spiral’, wherein a simple, haunting melody gives the piece a mesmerising quality caught perpetually in tension with slowed-down beats and a nagging bass motif. Dissonance and atonality are employed liberally here, on the title track and elsewhere; Scrivin’s conceit is to limit the effect so as not to induce nausea, but add just enough to create a sort of compelling uncertainty.
Stars And Rumours Of Stars by Neil Scrivin was released by Fonolith on April 12 2019.
Words: Mat Smith
(c) 2019 Further.