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Performer Notes
  • An obstacle regarding experimental techno, at least in terms of finding listeners, is that it can often be so cacophonous and distorted that all but the most dedicated and curious will pass it up for something a bit more accessible. While Venetian Snares (or Aaron Funk) is certainly not writing music with mainstream tastes in mind, by dint of his own natural instincts, he is led him to something that is exciting and strange but also very listenable. Approaching his songs nearly from a classical perspective, with recurring motifs and traditional progressions, Funk whirls through the six tracks on his 2006 album, Hospitality, and though the beat is certainly most important to him (he frequently layers his synthesizer into complex, nearly uncountable polyrhythms), his sense of melody is what drives the pieces and pulls them away from other drum'n'bass and breakcore artists. "Shoot Myself" begins with cathedral organ chords that swell into his distinctive drums, tapping and blurting out frenetically, winding themselves up only to stop and then start again, the synths moving into an almost jazzy syncopation. His cadre of sounds, most of them harmoniously percussive with a kind of accidental deliberateness, are his most trusted and reliable companions here, and he uses them to full effect and to their full creative powers, so that even though "Cabbage" (which features a solitary sung word, "strawberries") and "Duffy" have beats and ideas similar to every other song on the album, they also each have a singularity that sets them off from the rest. Hospitality is definitely a whole composition, with pieces that flow from one to another, but these same pieces work individually, fantastically electric and inventive but also relatable and repeatable, which makes the album, as with most albums by Venetian Snares, an addictive prospect. ~ Marisa Brown
Professional Reviews
The Wire (p.72) - "[With] a lighter, more melodic on 'Frictional Nevada' or 'Beverly's Potatoe Orchestra', with its glistening chinks of light and character."
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