REVIEW: Banabila - "Spherics"

By Marcus Pan

Chain Border

SphericsBanabila's work has been substantial lately, with his third CD in as many years. Spherics is also available from Tone Casualties - this label has been bringing you experimental music for some time now. Both of Banabila's previous TC releases, the VoizNoiz collection, have been reviewed in previous issues of Legends*.

As always, Banabila moves emotions like the moon pulls the sea - creating ebbs and flows in our thoughts and moods wherever and whenever he pleases. Spherics can be all-encompassing. Or it can be a background to chill out to. It's up to the listener.

In his past VoizNoiz project, co-titled Urban Soundscapes, Michael Banabila shows us how well he can combine noises of reality to create backgrounds of music. In Spherics he does the opposite - creating a sheer look into unreality and what it must sound like. All of the sounds have components in the real world - that might be a breath of wind you hear - but are infused with a metallic sourness that keeps it from being our world.

The CD is only seven tracks in length - half of a full length by today's standards. But it ranges from the shortest track, Science Freak, at just over six and a quarter to the nearly twelve minute Primitive Lab. One of the longer tracks is Suma 3. Suma 3 - White Mix somehow flows through you. It hovers just on the very edge of noise wash without plunging over, keeping the listener intensely aware of the music while remaining subconscious. At over 11 minutes, it could have been trimmed - but even so it has a wonderful culmination of voices, floating synths, subtle bass and rhythm.

Science Freak is a great name for track 4. It has a disturbing nature about it, partly grinding on your nerves partly evoking your fears. It grows to huge proportions. There is also the continuing Suma 4 - Blue Mix. While the first part of this duo had an intense background, Blue Mix is smooth and introspective. Tribal rhythms are woven deep into the bulk of the track, washed over by a constant blue current of soundwaves. Following Science Freak, it's a very comfortable return to a nicer, less disturbing place.

I've done a few things with Spherics. I've written and worked with it as background, I've plugged headphones in and closed my eyes to it. This is a versatile CD. I think this is the best of his work I've heard thus far.

Buy The Album
Buy Spherics

* Legends #111 & #120.

Contact Information:
Post: Tone Casualties, 6353 Sunset Blvd., Hollywood, CA, 90028
Phone: (323) 468-2724
Fax: (323) 463-0924

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