Jeton Hoxha | Vowel
Eighth Tower Records (DL)
Jeton Hoxha is a welcome newcomer in the world of drone and all that is darkly mysterious. The Macedonian artist’s forty-five minute singular work is coated from end to end with a shmeared landscape of reverb and resonance, mastered by the hard working label runner, Sonologyst. It’s layered with a thick sonic wall, but intermittently a melodic chord rises and pierces through the thick foggy surface.
This falls (or rather floats) between ambient and the dark side thereof – but seems to drift into its own soundfield. Think of an epic wind tunnel, or the vortex of a black hole. I only wish I had a surround sound system so I could step into the core of this whirling wonder. I am reminded of chamber music, that of the Phantom of the Opera, et al. (Gaston Leroux not Andrew Lloyd Webber that is). The longer and deeper this goes you can start to realize how Hoxha starts to virtually shift the center which starts to reckon its shape into something a little more organic that the perfect circle of the first half. Cowbells are fleeting with in the mix which adds a bit of a nightmarish quality. And even though it is the week of All Hallows Eve, this doesn’t in any way come off as hokey, it’s got a legit sense of haunting.
As the work howls away you can spy the distant toll, a jangle of perhaps a floating sea-bell. There are aspects of industrial innards here though if used he’s gone the extra step to create a true wind machine of sorts. The inspired intrigue created by Vowel is activated within a near implausible, suspended levitation. In the final quarter this simply roars. Bleary tower bells ring out, almost imperceptible in the treatment here, and a grey harmony that is likely a literal nod to Philip Glass’ Quatsi series help to draw the final breaths of this somnolent work that fades after a voluminous rise and fall.