Black Swan – Travesty Waves (Ethereal Symphony)

The music comes on like a haphazardly swallowed pill, patiently taking over your mind in a heavy narcotic tide until you realize you’re in a detention of a dream… by then, of course, it is too late…” -HC

Without really thinking, but after spending a day with the album, I wrote the words above on Black Swan‘s page, after the announcement of his highly anticipated seventh album, Travesty Waves, which he kind of just unleashed, out of nowhere, upon the world’s unprepared ears. I suppose it’s better than a build up with a blimp. Yet, it was a long-awaited release, after a nearly annual installment in his journey, ending in 2014 with Tone Poetry. Here, the enigmatic artist, with his own subtitled phrase of Drones For Bleeding Hearts creates thick tapestries of sound that simply draw the listener in and then hold him in their world, like a tiny buzz of electrical current plugged into the cranium at the back of your head. You can’t escape this gorgeous prison of resplendent sound.

Beginning with some long, drawn out, orchestral arrangements, that seem to go on forever and ever, the multi-layered cinematic curtain slowly falls, and even light can not escape this closed-off theater. Here, rich frequencies travel forward in multiple dimensions of time and space and envelope your whole within their timbres, shades, and tones. There is a hint of malevolence in here, a trick of a cunning magician, who charms and enchants until you’re wholly mesmerized and helpless in his grasp. It is then that he begins to mold your senses of perception, untangling the thin thread of existence to show you the truth: the fact that remains within all that is known is simply a vision, illusion, and dream…

Right about the moment when you begin to feel comfortable in this space of an album, the night settles in. Things begin getting darker, and spooky, perhaps. Chords blend with a dissonance, discord, and din. The dynamics begin to subside and you find yourself alone, surrounded by sound, which fills all your essence with the only nourishment your body needs. Suddenly you feel at peace, even in this empty shell of a grandiose structure, where the waves reverberate against its massive walls and travel great distances towards the closure never to return upon your ears again. You want to follow them, inquisitive of answers, in search of a final exit or an entrance into unknown bliss. But through your search, you realize that the only way to reach such heights is to become a sound wave yourself. The only way to drift through space is to dissolve in audible vibrations. And so you start to fade…

Cunningly drab, lustrously royal, and fearlessly grand! Highly recommended!

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Words by HC