Artistst: Alphastare / Hal McGee
Title: microcassette split
keywords: experimental electronic improvisation noise tape collage Gainesville
Alphastare takes us out on public transport, exchanges micro miniatures of street recordings with quick bites and snippets from all kinds of encounters. People talking and a cheaper version of Simon and Garfukel is captured alongside a classy guitar solo. The side of Alphastare is one journey in which it feels as if the artist zaps like a through conductor through a load of warm field recordings and lo-fi psychedelic chill music. It’s a nice balance that because of its dusty and muffled warmth in sound feels much more friendly then any digital produced work.
In general most of the recording is very relaxed, creating an ambient atmosphere to relax in. Even when things get a little bit more abstract, the feeling of chill is continued. Some instant laughing of a crowd might come unexpected, but it will clearly pave the way to a short lived psychedelic steam boat kind of musical melodrama that the recording ends with.
The very positive sounding Hal McGee’s part on the release is simply wonderful. It feels like a cute and little documentary as seen through the ears. Of course it’s a documentary about Hal McGee himself, as he drops his name like a lovable Mister Magoo and shows us how he ads mail to the mailbox (a real one, not the digital one mind you!) and probably takes us away to the postal office which seem to be followed up by the sounds of Hal McGee packing his packages with tape, paper and possibly fancy ribbons.
This documentary doesn’t hold back on privacy issues and that’s why our ears are invited to come along with Hal McGee in the little room in which he urinates a nice amount of audio urine. Ah! It is strange but listening to the output of such a healthy bladder makes you feel like you just released your own golden liquid yourself!
Of course Hal McGee’s famous friendship with his dog Stanley is brilliantly captured here on this documentary. As a proud owner he tells in a friendly matter that the barking of his best man’s friend is ‘just the way he is’… Adorable! There is also good humor available on the audio documentary; from the sound of squeaky squeezable toys, black stained pillars, to Hal McGee promising to make a note of his fellow residents with a pit bull for a concerned neighborhood serial complainer. Good time laughter and cozy times!
Conclussion? Well it sounds like this micro cassette has two different, but pleasurable sides to the story. While Alphastare takes us around in a relaxing lo-fi ambient work with field recordings,Hal McGee is the one who cheers everyone up with a jolly good positive outtake of his personal activities! Great!