Artists: Sermo III & Cult .45
Title: Sex Yeast
Keywords: Ambient, Darkwave, Industrial, Minimalist
Reviewer: Alex Spalding
Another request, and this one’s a real gem… a diamond in the rough that just got cut, is still unpolished, and corrupts the hearts and minds of men. These requests… they’re always so interesting to listen to. Is it high-brow? Is it low-brow? Maybe it’s no-brow. Just totally browless art. Do not listen too close to the words I speak, however… listen instead to this…
‘Intro- Ghosts In My Empty Room’ introduces us to the album, with clanging patters of noise and what sound like vocals treated so heavily that they’ve almost become ambient… dark, hushed shards of voice echo into the darkness. I feel like the ghosts are in my ears, setting up eternal residencies and tossing chairs about. Eventually, more percussive clips and crystalline pads emerge. Every sound seems to be vibrating slowly.
Next is ‘A Broken Smile’, which brings out some creepy sounds before adding a ghoulish organ and low-in-the-mix distorted downtempo beat. There are more ethereal vibrations, pained human vocal chords being pressed by air passing out of the lungs of the tortured… or maybe that’s just singing? I don’t know, but it sounds horrible. Horrible in a good way, I mean. Like, fuck yeah man, that’s horrible. As I smile, I say this. A hymn of theremin-like sounds in an exotic scale enter the sound field, along with operatic vocals and voodoo grunts. Total black magick. The vocal-stylings from before come back in, clearer now or just above the fog. I think I’ve found my soundtrack for next Halloween. It ends with a click and extended moment of silence, before…
… ‘Finger’d’, which begins with some flanged sound effects that could be our astral souls leaving our bodies behind to dance with the scarecrows beyond the corn. A low, modulated and near-rhythmic pulse starts up and tiny, impish voices seem to hover around us. We’re left with a reverberating click and distorted chip drone for a bit, before more of the detached, headless sounds re-emerge alongside only smatterings of pulse and rhythm. All of the sounds are subtle and tenuous, very flighty and not content to remain for long in this span of track. If anyone’s been fingered to this track… my deepest sympathies. I’m sure that was a terrifying experience for you.
‘9312’ begins with treated white noise frequencies and spoken word, engorged and heavily modified by strange, alien effects. It’s very psychedelic. You can hear electronic burbles…
… after that short track, it’s ‘Crustacean Anthem (Cheesy Whores)’. There is a soft onrush of distorted vocal noise, almost like the voice has been digitally stretched to the point of breaking. A really nice breakbeat comes in. There’s a dark tribalism to this, almost like some of 23 Skidoo’s experiments. Clips of vocal samples used rhythmically, harsh but smooth frequencies… this track’s got it. I’m absolutely loving it by this point. Total braindead industrial breaks are getting thrown down here. Now it’s almost kind of reminding me of solo Mark Stewart.
‘2139’ begins with some off-putting laughter, like a nitrous oxide fueled spiral into oblivion. This turns to spoken work, heavily effected. Really wild stuff.
Then it’s ‘She Gave My Heart To The Cenobites’, with it’s electro noise from beyond the gates of Midian and bare traces of voice samples. A nice, funky 909 break comes in. Later, piano. Pinhead sample, then some sorrowful and distorted female vocals.
More piano and noise, as well as some distorted spoken word bits on ‘Shards’, just before another gritty beat comes in that’s mostly shoved into the background behind all the layers of dirt and grime. Shrill feedback makes you feel like you’re going mad. It’s almost a maelstrom, really.
Last is ‘Outro- In Which I Accidentally The Entire Album’. Tremolo-noise of an electronic character is sustained while barely audible traces of other sounds can be heard at times in the muck of it all.
There’s an analog depth to this album, it almost feels as though it had been recorded to tape or run through some particular machine before reaching your ears. The rhythmic component in most of the pieces that even had one felt to me to be a bit too quiet, but overall it was a solid experiment noise type album that I enjoyed a lot. You can get a copy of it at the link: