Notes From Isolation Part II


NFI002 02 May, 2021

Ryan Crosson’s Part II—the latest installment in his three album set with NFI recordings—leaves behind the first LP’s cinematic horizons in exchange for the somber realpolitik of darker atmospherics and sound design. If Part I looked to the empty, open spaces of an oddly Covid-evacuated world, Part II  examines instead the closed space of the self cut off from it. Granular sampling and synthesis become, in the conceptual scheme of the record, more than production techniques to process sound but rather tools by which to process the granularities of selfhood re-worked by Covid’s dislocations. Still unwilling to commit to a full album of low frequency metronomes and rhythms (because there is no rhythm to our current life), Crosson’s Part II employs instead prepared pianos and dub leaning textures, while nodding to Ennio Morricone and the soundtracks of Spaghetti Westerns, to better approximate the out of tempo percussive and affective swings of the previous year.

Known worldwide for his dance music record label and group alias, Visionquest, Ryan has
been representing the Midwest in electronic music for over fifteen years and has toured the
world extensively since 2007. Having remixed the likes of Tracey Thorn and David Lynch,
Ryan is no stranger to cross-genre productions and the ever increasing landscape of
contemporary music. Equally at home in the studio or a dusty warehouse, Ryan’s production
and sampling practices depart from the worlds of house or techno by referencing musique
concrète, Downtown New York funk, drone, ambient and East African jazz. While Ryan was
born and raised on a steady diet of post-apocalyptic landscapes, dark warehouses, and the
sounds of Plastikman, Matthew Dear, and Villalobos, he continues to expand the horizon
of possibility within his music by venturing outside of his comfort zone to explore new territory.

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