JOE COLLEY

Trance Tapes

(No Rent) 2xCassette $20.00

Four sides of new sound materials constructed in early 2021. “Brain buzz is a familiar sensation on Trance Tapes. Anyone who makes it through at reasonably high volume will absolutely feel slightly insane by the end. A person could be convinced that this tape was leaked from a secret CIA black ops project involving the weaponization of high frequencies.”

DARKSMITH

Regret Everything

(No Rent) Cassette + Poster $15.00

Without uttering a single syllable, Darksmith Of California sketches a solid case that everyone has been replaced with replicants. Metaphorically, let’s say, if that’s what it takes to accept the premise. Throughout Regret Everything’s thirty-minute capgras-adjacent mood-kill, corrupted and near-stillborn modulations groom themselves against the bristles of truncated fidelity. Here then is No Rent’s apt herald for the invariably bright-with-optimism mornings on the West Coast, with its instances of damaged tape transforming bird-coop piano into anti-erotic asphyxiation, and croaking plank frottage distilled from five-hundred pounds of bird guts pushed out of a trombone. It is a drily disturbing landscape, to be sure, where pock-marked eggs the size of a kidnapper’s van grind against cement walls, raining down flakes and calcium shards. On this slightly reworked reissue of Mom Costume’s 2018 edition of 10, fumes of diesel fuel rise from the surfaces of amorphous chunks of scorched Styrofoam scattered in sugary puddles of avian placenta. Newborn chicks, writhing in balls of discomfort and dread, stretch to puncture the constricting membrane of disorientation, unaware they’ve been blinded by mercury leaked from ruptured polyps bearing down on them. All the machines have tumors. Hello and welcome.

DARKSMITH

Island of Stability / Primitive Version

(No Rent) Cassette $10.00

Tempting though it may be to regard the work of Tom Darksmith as the soundtrack to a debilitating hangover in search of shameless debauchery, nope, you must be thinking of someone else. A 50-year-old who still skateboards, probably. If anything, it’s our contemporary era’s chronic malaise that seems to be what evolves apace with the ongoing doomsday-affirming mumble-scapes and murky abrasions this Oakland-based artist delivers at steady but irregular intervals — not the other way around. Sophistos and returning champions might feel oddly soothed by the new side-long grit terrains on No Rent’s c30, where master forager Darksmith smudges and gnaws the less conspicuous avenues of noise design, like a very determined ostrich auditioning for the role of truffle pig (since he’s down there anyway). It’s your classic journey-not-the-destination work, inefficiency be damned, devoid of stunt screeching beloved by shallow and cynical hacks the world over, too imbued with real-world demands to bother with the showy academic pretense of ascribing significance to the commonplace or to indirectly challenging the listener to not hate his guts by the time the play button snaps off. Darksmith works for a living, presumes you do, too — even you unemployable lunatics — and has loaded Island of Stability Primitive Version with a solid and fulfilling program: churning and grinding molded into a coherent, communal, quasi-narrative mass; voice fragments shattered and scattered near urban storm drains, where the last flickers of meaning rot and ooze downward toward the final mulch pile; and evocations of drama-free emotional desolation hobbling through borderline toxic atmospheres.