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Ninth Desert / Matériel Brouilleur – Ainos

[CDR, Deserted Factory]

Ninth Desert / Matériel Brouilleur – Ainos

Ainos sees the debut of both Ninth Desert and Matériel Brouilleur on Japanese label Desert Factory and is released as a hand-numbered limited edition of just 150 CDR copies.  Ninth Desert is the solo project of French artist Cyril Herry formed in 2005 and has four previous albums under its belt, the fifth being Neyss released around the same time as this album.  Although he started using the name as far back as 2006, Jean-Francois Fanton’s project Matériel Brouilleur makes its debut with Ainos.

Based around low atmospheric dronescapes, Ainos concentrates on the subtleties of dark ambient music.  Deliberately minimal, each track heaves and rumbles its way along, almost metallic in tone, as if created by huge mechanical devices.  The drones are big and earth-shaking but low and discrete, just audible enough to have the desired effect but not dominant.  The constant low rumble is accompanied by equally large scale industrial buzz saw sounds that swing, circle and engulf.  While the drone is deep and dull, the circling, abrasive, metallic industrial scrapes and whirs are aggressive and threatening.  As the drone discretely shifts in the background and becomes more prominent it raises the tension level with it, bringing heightened anxiety and ever darker imagery.  “Sennassiom” for example could represent the descent of a massive flock of angry mechanical birds, darkening the sky with their sheer numbers.  “Seriel” initially calms things down but slowly reveals itself as its dark tones rise and fall, becoming increasingly agitated before calming once more and slowly disintegrating into silence by its close.  Clocking in at less than four minutes and changing the emphasis somewhat is “Maz Experience” with short heavy grinding tones, reversed synths and general demonic undertones, it is a short interlude of subtle nightmarish sounds and spectral groans building to a crescendo before suddenly dissipating.  Closing the album is the longest track of the five; the 19 minute “Depressive Western” is a lengthy track returning to the dark ambient soundscapes experienced earlier in the album.  As tones slowly undulate, they rise and fall with a gentle melancholy, still dark and uneasy but with a new sense of calm introspection.

Similar in style to Ninth Desert’s Neyss released by Deserted Factory around the same time, Ainos has a darker, more minimal atmosphere and a metallic theme running throughout.  The sound is generally big and expansive giving the impression of long empty enclosed spaces, sometimes hinting at sinister forces but generally focusing on mood and generating feelings of tension, anxiety or melancholy.  Overall, Ainos is a collection of drone-based dark ambient tracks that take their time to unravel, evolve and find their way. 

Rating: ★★★★★★★☆☆☆



Published by Judas Kiss Magazine [October 31st 2009]

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