Title: Fuoco Cammina Con Me
Label: SP Recordings
Keywords: Trip Hop, Experimental, Witch House
Reviewer: Alex Spalding
It had just become evening and I stood in front of a mirror in the bathroom of my manor combing my chest hair. A memory was conjured to mind quite suddenly of an old urban legend – or was it just a film? – and I was gripped then by a terrible desire… yes, it was as if I were possessed. I spoke into the mirror, “Candyman! Candyman! Candyman!!!” Then all the lights went out and, before my eyes, there materialized the figure of a man with a hook for a hand sitting upon the toilet! I am not ashamed to admit that I screamed. It was all I could do to not drop dead of fright. The stench itself was indescribably awful. When I regained my composure, I asked of the spirit, “Who are you!? What are you doing here!?” The daimon replied, “Yo, I’m the candyman son, and I’m takin’ a shit!” “Oh, ok.” I said. Then he spoke again, and said, “By the way, I came here to tell you to go to SPNet and listen to Fuoco Cammina Con Me by MVSN, it’s really good. Go listen to it right now and write a review while I finish up in here.” I bade him adieu and arrived at the computer to do just that, and…
… The fire walks with MVSN on this release, inspired by David Lynch’s Twin Peaks. I feel like mentioning at the outset that it was only in the last year I was made aware of the existence of the “Witch House” genre of which this release claims kinship. I can’t really definitely delineate the aspects of that style of music, so am unable to analyze it in respect to it’s genre tag… but I will be able to tell you that the release was really cool. Here’s how:
The first track is ‘Get Happy’, and it begins with some strange sampled noises, a piano buried within it. Oh, wait, I recognize this, it’s that ‘C’mon Get Happy’ song… but it’s all slo-mo and sounds kind of creepy. A slow breakbeat comes in after a bit in total stereo surround. These sounds, somewhere between a string and a cat’s howl start coming into the mix. This is like… voodootronics. I feel zombified, listening to it, like my soul is leaving it’s body behind. Some really pretty chords float around for a little while. Wowee zowee.
Then it’s ‘Never Made It Home’, with some droning pads and samples that sound like they could be from Twin Peaks. Trip hop breakbeats begin, followed by these beautiful dark and harmonious synth / epiano type chords. Very cool. There’s an Angelo Badalamenti vibe, for sure, or maybe it’s closer to Barry Adamson’s style of dark jazz trip hop? A sharper, buzzier sounding synth comes in, kind of abruptly… it takes the mind a moment to register what’s just happened to the song when it arrives, but eventually you manage to syncretize so that it makes sense. I hear guitar next, perfect in the mixdown, giving the track a nice soundtracky vibe. Bells sound nice by it’s side. It ends a bit suddenly.
‘Living In A Dream’ starts up with a swingy, downtempo break with snaps. Some really eclectic electronic modulations come in, over which a high-pitched siren of a bell, kind of reminiscent of The Nightmare On Elm Street. The beats are crisp and sound like they’re being flogged. Lots of electronic sfx throughout and beat manipulation, making this a lot of fun to listen to. Eventually the beat starts sounding stretched it could rip. The bass is like a predator on the loose. Really nice track. This one also ends a bit suddenly.
After that is ‘Evil Revealed’, which made me remember a part of King’s Danse Macabre, discussing the inefficacy of revealing the monster in the horror film genre. No worries here… ‘Evil Revealed’ provokes suspense. Nice, melodic and partly distorted sounding synths lead to breakbeats and a sample that sounds like someone is being slowly torn apart. Lots of samples here, giving the track a tiny trace of a Fulci vibe. It’s a pretty chill track for the most part, though! It feels like the horror is on the horizon, about to descend on our town at any time like the Tall Man out of Phantasm. Loving the organ stabs!!! Ends with shimmering synth arps and screams.
‘Misteri’ features a deep, bassy drone that has a prettiness to it due to it feeling like amalgamated synth chords. The samples and breaks are really cool! This is another one of those tracks I’d love to take with me on a walk in the late-night hours. This whole album would be perfect for that, though. The synth-chords that come in later on that feel like they’re slow to come in, as if they were being sucked through a tube to our ears… really nice.
‘Trys To Warn’… warns us about 6 tracks in, which is a bit late by my estimation, and we’ve already been murdered. Thirsty for vengeance, our preternatural spirits continue listening so as not to leave any unfinished business on the mortal plane. There are noisy and harsh sounds and voice samples, what sounds like a beat twisted beyond recognition. The horror! Blood fills our vision. A sample driven course lays before us and we are drunk with a lust for death, stumbling over ourselves. The corporeal detritus of our criminal passions lay upon the floor, unmoving. You can feel the throb of the track toward the end, like a heart overflowing in madness…
This gives way to the drugged ‘She Doesn’t Like That’. Very slow motion, wild if subdued, it feels like coming down after a moment of over-stimulation. The whole track feels like a fading montage of our post-predatory unwinding.
In a similar vein, if I might be excused at least one terrible pun (ha.), is Her Final Day. Very slow, stretched out grooves, a distorted bassline, loads of bizarre samples, wonderful synthesizer sequences. The vibe is like deep hypnosis, guided and severe neurological suggestions. Very chill toward the end with the inclusion of a nice drone arrangement.
In ‘Everything BUT EveryThing’ you hear a motorcycle, drones… it’s like we’re taking a peek behind the red curtain, are getting much closer to discovering the truth about Laura Palmer. The shrill, repetitive buzz and breakbeat groove so low in the mix eventually end up joined by a very beautiful synth chord drone. Loving it. No sour faces here. Loving the Twin Peaks piano sample, too!
‘I Always Thought You Knew’ busts out the beautiful, low-cutoff synth chords, before mostly burying them under the stiff, cold breaks. Some electro-style robo vox manipulations, followed later with some interesting modulating synth strings! Really cool!
‘The Lodge’ starts with some noise, what sounds like dead radio air waves being twiddled through. I hear a totally weird choir thing going on, a busted piano maybe… then some strings, my guess is sampled from the film because they sound that way, I can’t remember the whole soundtrack as it’s been so long. Strangely, I want some pie and coffee.
‘Don’t Expect To Find A Turkey Dog Here’ begins with very slow, booming breaks, deep bass… also film samples? Hard to tell. Regardless, it’s very dark and also slightly menacing. I think I recognize it, though. The samples make you nervous. As a final track, it does a really good job of bringing everything into perspective… a great track to just put on and subject people to, probably while you’re drinking.
What can I say… this album is really great in a way most diabolical, so I would definitely recommend checking it out after cannibalizing the neighbors or maybe while you’re just sitting in at home, cuddling up by the fire with a warm mug of gore. So, I provided a link right down here…
… then decided I’d return to the bathroom… but the Candyman was gone! He was an uncivil guest though, and I spent the next hour having to flush his beez down the toilet.