Conducive - Vanterwood Industries, Inc.
Remember: December 18
A wordless story of industrial exploration with a sinister undertone, Vanterwood Industries, Inc. is aurally the stuff that unnerving and surreal dreams are made of. Deep drones and industrial noise mix together with subtle harmonies to give the atmosphere of something seemingly mundane but also subtly frightening. As I listened, I tried to grab clues as to what may be going on in this strange industrial complex that would be cause for concern, but that's all I got - concern. There are no answers here, there are only questions and the prompts for your imagination to run with multitudes of possibilities. The intentional vagueness is where this album stays and never gives clarity, sonically or thematically.
The structure of the album makes for an interesting storytelling device, almost as much as the musical content itself. Broken down into three tracks, the first track sets an ominous tone, as if our narrator is simply watching the complex from the outside as it churns its machinery in relative obfuscation, droning on and giving only an inkling of its inner working. The second seems lively by comparison as we hear the familiar sounds of air brakes, diesel engines, and birds chirping in the distance, making it seem like any other factory. The third track brings us back to the ominous tones of the factory at night, though now we feel closer to it, as if we are approaching a terrifying reveal. As the track grows louder and more complex, the dread and wonder pile up until he very end in which we get a slight crescendo and he track ends quite suddenly. In the end we're left without answers. It is a perfectly ambiguous end.