REVIEW: The Unquiet Void - "Between the Twilights"

By Mike Ventarola

Chain Border

The Unquiet VoidMiddle Pillar introduces Jason Wallach, the mastermind behind The Unquiet Void. If you ever pondered on the noise of silence, Wallach clearly demarcates this through his highly ambitious, and at times, disturbing, work. The music is breathtaking, literally! At times, one can feel as if they are being sucked through a chasm of space where all oxygen is being depleted by the second. Listening to it, the gamut of emotions are depicted from the sacred to the profane. For those with the rare condition of synesthesia, where one hears sound as colors, Between the Twilights paints the darkside with an atmospheric liquid gloom, yet gives homage to the light side as well in equal doses.

What Dreams May Come is dark, spatial and antagonizes the innate nature of man. We are led to our own slumber on an ethereal wave that traverses down the corridor of good vs. evil within oneself. This aspect of self is only seen when the conscious is free to roam during sleep. The angelic vocal like intonations transfer to our own unlocked haunted dreams. Delirium Come (Whey Eyes Close) travels within the mind that is at unease during sleep. White noise-like sounds shift around that blur the images, yet give a feeling of movement through some nebulous mist. It intones like the beginning stages of a nightmare.

The Dreaming Begins starts with a clever utilization of percussion to depict a heartbeat, the body and the music become as one. Orchestration opens up with a light edge, similar to the fragmented moments that are pleasant in the dream world just after one falls asleep. Surrealistic Visions segues from the last song with a mild cacophony of bells that radiates towards more orchestration and underlying sounds similar to the visionary experience of the dream world. Snips of conversation, that are barely audible, weave between the fragments of music that give a feeling as if the music is breathing. Sinking Into The Blue Black Oblivion brings the slumber to a level of midnight flotation. The psyche is brought to a deeper area where the unconscious chasm and one's mind coalesce on the same dream tide. One can almost feel the body floating through the dark waters of life on some distant shore.

Sea of Serenity provides a touch of anxiety with a deep drone like opening that we are pulled towards as chimes that sound like buoys gently float past us. At this point, we are deeply within ourselves as well as within the sound. The gentle dance of light and dark are not ominous and clearly co-habitate as equal sides of the same coin. We lay stranded on a dock in the midst of evening, fully aware of the things we like and dislike about ourselves. There are no worries however, since it is only you, the dark musical water, and the sound which caresses you in the moonlight. Angels evolves like a swirling presence in the middle of an electric storm that replicates into many heavenly bodies. Flashes of energy are depicted via sound spurts, giving rise to a being greater than ourselves. At this point, one is in the company of angels, both the light and the dark. Energy waves of hot and cold as well as light and dark mirror back our own internal contentment and discord. It is akin to peering into our higher consciousness.

Drifting Beyond Familiar Dreamscapes segues from the last song to bring back the ominous and the dreaded. We have succumbed to the false tranquility of the murky waters of our mind and are led into the deepest chasm that reflects those elements frightening for us to look at in the light of day. Episodic ringing, like a telephone, are heard in the distance that could be our own reality calling us back to safety. The sleeper however has gone too deep and now must continue on the journey inward, no matter how unpleasant it may seem. Dark, murky caves loom in the foreground, daring us to seek them out. Lighter sounds echo to give a sense of direction that all is not lost. Gentle cacophony and clicking reminiscent to a giant pair of scissors adds to the tension.

Between the TwilightsMorning Twilight returns us to a deep pounding in the chest while all the images manifest within one's mind. The doors that were unlocked now peer wide open and one must consider the ramifications of this journey. Somber tones provide a backdrop of barren darkness with the added tension that is coiled like a cobra that is ready to strike. It is as if an ethereal double is haunting our moment, creating this rise of anxiety towards self acceptance or denial. The lighter sounds become more apparent and soon cover the entire body like the alternate light angels that were depicted earlier. Once again, the dark and the light harmonize and converge on the razor's edge of a dance towards co-existence. The Waking Hour (From Dark to Dark) again segues from the last song with a heartbeat like sound which then meanders with a pensive anticipation. The dreamer becomes the dream, in essence, and all that has transpired before converge and reconcile themselves to bring the vision of all expectation to another level of yearning.

Between The Twilights is meditative, reflective and at times, disturbing. It is like a midnight swim in the moonlight where we are unsure if we are truly safe from the aquatic dangers that may lurk beneath the darkened waters. Subliminally, it encroaches upon our psyche to peer into the corners of our mind that we choose to ignore. The music at times took on the element of breathing and floating in an effortless fashion, which propelled us to a false sense of security, not unlike our waking existence. Like the fury of water that becomes a rushing tidal wave, the sound plunged us headlong into a forbidden and ominous territory that we are finally forced to confront.

Like other Middle Pillar label releases, The Unquiet Void is for the connoisseur of music who strives for a more mature element to their dark music which makes them feel and think. Wallach doesn't just create music, he creates the elemental forces via sound. At various points in the recording, one is left with the feeling of sound becoming fluid, fire, earth and air. Rather than being a total descent into dark ambient music, this recording stretches to create a harmonic entity that is fully capable of being light and dark without compromising either. For those who desire music that stretches the paradigms of introspective parameters, Between the Twilights will enable you to create whole new worlds of existence within your own dreams.

Contact Information:
Post: Middle Pillar Presents, Ltd., P.O. Box 555, New York, NY, 10009

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