New: Quartz, by Smokey Emery


“At once sinister and endearing.” And without (much) further ado, Indian Queen Records introduces Daniel Hipólito’s latest Smokey Emery release, the Quartz EP.

Like the previous Indian Queen album I am no longer alone with myself… (Silent Land Time Machine), Quartz is a field recording from innerspace. A sound card rip from the streaming broadcast between Hipólito’s ears. Ostensibly a tape collage taken from original and found sounds, Quartz more closely resembles a cubist sketch seized from the visual realm and atomized into sound. Just look to the cover art and the out-of-sequence tracklist for exhibits A and B of the case.

Movement VI inaugurates this brief release with warped loops in tight radii, which rise and fall in tempo as we listen. This is instantly recognizable because we have all been there, and recently: anxieties that voice themselves over and again until facts become blurred, or conversations we remember and relive until we blurt them out loud. The metaphor is painful to hear being transcribed to art, but like the sign says, art is a mirror. Movements VII and then V are far more reassuring, even orchestral: the tape machine modifications of a large, brassy, choral sources. Between percussive ricochets of sound and the growl of processing lies in each a beautiful, melodic center, which comes most into focus during the final moments of Movement VII. Great subtitle, too: “A Craft in Control.” Control?

Indian Queen Records is an independent, Austin-based label and sister company to Holodeck Records. We interviewed four artists from the Holodeck roster last week. Read more about the Smokey Emery project here.

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