Thrill Behind Barks - A Small Quagmire

Released: March 22

A Small Quagmire is the debut album from a new group that includes previously well-known experimental artist The Creeping Man, Timewitch, and The Angler King. The result of this collaboration is a deeply atmospheric and exceptionally dark album that morphs in is shape and composition throughout its runtime. It opens up the the slow and sullen otherworldly tones of "I Eat Hair," a track that slowly burns and seethes itself all the way towards the end until deeply reverberated percussion takes over from the gaunt drones that started the track. But this is not where the album stays, as the next track features more and of these percussive sounds and all manner of glitched and heavy tones next to them. As the album carries on, there is this slowly rotating set of tones and motifs that appear over and over. It sounds as if the influence of each artist is naturally waxing a waning throughout the album with each track seemingly showcasing some influence of one particular artist, though it is never clear which one. 

While the album has a sense of internal consistency as a whole, there are some tracks that just so wildly out there that they stand out for the right reasons. A favorite of mine on the album is "Funky Dental Piggentwingers," a track that is hard to describe exactly but seems like a cheap and partially broken drum machine coming through a UHF band cathode ray tube television from the early 80s. There is this persistent and ever-present hum in the background that seems to through a shadow over the other elements of the track, creating a strange and wonderful effect that I fell in love with immediately. The next track returns us to the wide and sweeping reverberating atmospheres we are familiar with but now joined by indiscernible speech that seems to be spoken loudly into a void. All of these varied and murky tones throughout, combined with the more unexpected compositions create a darkly ethereal experience with just a slight bitter note. 


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