Album Title: 
Hiding Place
Release Date: 
Thursday, January 28, 2016
Review Type: 

Germany’s project Emerge did create quite some stuff in mean time (also under different monikers, like as part of the fabulous Martwa Natura-collaboration), and once in a while previously unreleased material finally gets the attention it deserves. That’s the case right here, with Hiding Place. It consists of some stuff that was recorded in September 2013 (if I am not mistaken, more stuff from those recording sessions were released under the Attenuation Circuit-banner, which is the project’s own label - cf. an outfit like Variax). Anyway, Frozen Light (one of those labels that almost continuously brings out outstanding material) did put five compositions from those sessions on digi-file-CD, and they released it in an edition of 300 hand-numbered copies.

Hiding Place opens with Flight I, the only piece that, with its six minutes of length, clocks under ten minutes (the totality comes close to an hour of play), which starts with some weird sounds like the hollow noise of falling water drops and industrial noises, yet not of the harsh kind. Rather than harsh or heavy, this material withholds an atmosphere of relative tranquillity, yet still it grabs you by the throat. As an introduction, it does set the tone for a mystic and mysterious adventures through post-apocalyptic landscapes. Recover continues within a comparable vein. Quite minimal sounds create an asphyxiation yet, at the same time, dreamlike atmosphere, accompanying the listener to forbidden dimensions beyond the unknown. Remarkable yet consistently fitting is the collaboration of Prinzip Nemesis’ singer Eljara (the very same goes for the composition Tension, by the way; both artists did collaborate before). Towards the end, the finale gets characterised by an organic drone-like injection, smartly interacting with the soft and distant hummings. The third creation, Menace, is quite spooky and haunting – which surely will have to do with the collaboration of Russian artist Pavel Aleshin aka Re-Drum, a close friend of Emerge’s frontman Sascha Stadlmeier. This diverse song defines the primal essence of Drone-Ambient Music, yet penetrated with ritual elements and post-industrial influences. For what it’s worth: Menace is my favourite piece on Hiding Place. With Tension and Flight II, we have two other compositions that combine Musique Concrète, Ambient, Drone, Noise, Industrial, you know, soundscapes in a minimalistic and pure form, lacking of bombastic eruptions or heavy outbursts, yet focusing on a calm approach. But as said before: that ‘calm’ stands in opposition to boredom, for the result is quite dark, hypnotic and suffocative. There’s a structure spiced with unstructured aural gifts, leaving you both confused and satisfied. Don’t expect normality, but experience the experiment…