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With five feeble senses we pretend to comprehend the boundlessly complex cosmos, yet other beings with wider, stronger, or different range of senses might not only see very differently the things we see, but might see and study whole worlds of matter, energy, and life which lie close at hand yet can never be detected with the senses we have.”

-H.P. Lovecraft, 1920

This is really a mindfucker of all times, man!

– John Sebastian, 1969

After checking out any one of the many mind-bending recordings that Matt Valentine has been involved with over the years (Discogs currently shows that he’s credited on a staggering 259 releases), you might suspect that his psychonaut guitar wizardry and his bottomless well of mystical creativity are not of this world. Preserves could very well confirm this possibility.

To start with, this record is less of an album and more of an experience–an immersive experience. From the very beginning, the music pulls you in, forms around you, and totally dominates your very perception with a rush of cascading sounds. The more you listen, the deeper you sink into the densely packed layers of squirming, wildly improvising guitars, synths and other instruments. Free form? More like freak-form.

Across Preserves’ eight songs, you will find yourself grooving along to twisted astro-funk (“Light Speed>”), having your consciousness fried with fuzzed-up acid maelstroms (“Rockbottomless”) and finally being set adrift through a cosmic sea from the haziest of drone-fests (“Analog Love>”).

Perhaps the most striking aspect of this record is the way it was mixed. The painstakingly   well-crafted production makes you feel as though you’re being guided through Valentine’s brain as he dreams up new musical content. Various sonic memories and influences trickle through the recording in the form of samples from jams and fractured melodies, which bleed into each other until they give way to a mist of chaotic noise. From this erratic primordial cacophony emerges new, complete songs (and damn fine ones at that, too!)

If you love an album that:

a) is so finely detailed that you’ll always notice something new hiding in the mix during every listen

b) sounds like it was recorded by an artist that has evolved a metaphysical third eye (or ear)

c) rocket you to the furthest reaches of the solar system

d) all of the above

…then Preserves absolutely needs to be in your possession ASAP. Lucky for you, you can buy this album today from, you guessed it, Beyond Beyond is Beyond Records.

-KH

 

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