Next up on Aïsha Devi’s Danse Noire is ‘The Recurrence Of Infections’ [复发感染] by bod [包家巷] to be released on December 7th, 2018. A beautiful yet unsettling album, comprised of multiple arrangements travelling through ambient pop, string, noise and digital textures, the audio piece conceptualizes a state of mind in “the quiet hours of laborious coping that fall into the areas between work and sleep.” It comes with additional sound and video supplements that “are components of the larger, continuous work that is living.” The title refers to a series of health issues that Nicholas Zhu aka bod [包家巷] had while living in Los Angeles. “Mothership Earth does not experience apocalypse in the tradition of Western thought”, continues Zhu on the release, “She cycles through extinction the same way a body battles disease, only to change and rebirth herself. I’ve given up seeing the end of all things as they come to me as well as attempting to reduce myself to a present moment. People talk a lot about nonlinear time these days, but nobody has said a word to me about non-spatial time.” Accompanied by a filmic supplement by Isabelle Harada, ‘The Recurrence Of Infections’ [复发感染] is an emotional force, heightened by remixes from Flora Yin-Wong and M.D. James.
Nicholas Zhu’s previous efforts as bod [包家巷] saw them folding context both online and off into palpable concepts like MoVA (Museum of Virtual Art) as well as sound pieces Advent of the Silicon Rain [硅雨来临] and Limpid Fear [清澈恐惧], released through Quantum Natives and KNIVES, respectively. Zhu’s music is primarily constructed through piano and voice, “performed” through active manipulation of a MIDI instruments and vocal recordings overlaid and situated in field recordings and soundtrack rips. The resulting world created reads as documentations or meta-considerations of the present moment, measurements of the experience of life through technologically informed sound design.
Zhu has stated in previous interviews that their practice in music is distinct from their art, citing “socioeconomic precarity” as a driving force behind their work. “I put my studio practice on hold specifically to work on music (for efficacy, music allows me to engage with people in a way that art can’t) knowing that meaning doesn’t translate, even when literally transcribed.”
The spacious desolation and emotional surges that are felt in the sound piece aren’t intended to impart meaning as much as expressing an affect, specifically attuned to the darker moments in one’s life when they are self-loathing, lost in unease and intense fear. The work varies from calm and polymorphous soundscapes to maximal onslaughts of noise and harmonies, each section stitched to the next as nonlinear, anecdotal chapters in a story of personal experience.
The Recurrence Of Infections [复发感染] w/Flora Yin-Wong & M.D. James remixes will be released on Danse Noise, December 7th, 2018
22/02/19 FUTURUM, Wroclaw, Poland
more TBA on soundcloud.com/baojiaxiang
Feature photo by Jan Durina