Ever the youngsters, Elephant 9 and Supersilent keyboardist Stale Storlokken and Food percussionist Thomas Stronen irritate, upset, provoke, enervate, and ultimately inspire with their skilled placement of excessive, bold, and sometimes irrational musical effects in the context of the Norwegian avant-garde jazz scene.
The album is of an innumerable brood, which sees the duo switch quite blithely from blapsy analogue-sounding synth creations, to deeply rounded and fleshly free jazz sounds, and spacily atmospheric pieces. "Stream" dips headfirst into a very loud sound ocean, consisting of a wonderful see-saw dynamism and enough baubled squiggle noise to make anyone remotely sensible want to do headstands. Rhythmic, fragmentary, staccato fragments of gusto and emphatic musicality continue to flash back and forth between the players, enveloping the environment without itself ever quite cohering into an integrated system, thus avoiding all manner of stylistic whatsits.
At this stage, the duo manages to exorcise their experimental demons, but it's done in a manner that is generally compelling, and rarely showy. Both players definitely know how to embellish a line, but, as especially witnessed in later tracks, also know how to remain mute, and how to branch out on their own just long enough.
When the players settle into a more highly integrated music, based on superfluity and pinched prissiness, soothing yet of a certain rigorous looseness, there is a sense in which they have remained faithful to the spirit of the album on a whole. Everywhere Rest At Worlds End is an intimately physical phenomenon, suitably fiery, articulate, probing, and playful.
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