Sunday, August 21, 2005

Abstract Thought

Storm #4: The Abstract Thought album Hypothetical Situations is number four in the Storm series and significantly or not is the only Storm to have its number included in the sleeve notes.

There was a huge gap of up to at least 3 months between the vinyl promo's of this going out and the record finally hitting the shops, a friend of mine had it for this long at least. Maybe part of the reason for it being numbered is because it would have seemed to most people counting as the final Storm in the series as they would have included the already released Grava 4. Just a way to let people know there’s more to come and more than meets the eye about the whole thing. I don't know whether this Storm is any more significant than the others, it being the eye of the storm. I guess you could say that it is calm in its theme of thought/mental development, but the music certainly doesn't reflect this.

Before we get into the music and titles the most different thing between this Storm and the others to date is that the artwork appears to be by wholly by Drexciya. We’ll never know if James Stinson or Gerald Donald themselves actually sat down and designed this or just worked closely with a designer friend but we can be sure that it is the first artwork so far that most closely relates to what they wanted as the credit reads 'Imaging by Dimensional Waves Imaging and Oblivion Visual Concepts'. The second part of this name is interesting. Oblivion Visual Concepts, to interpret the phrase literally might mean, visual ideas which lead to nothingness, the void. Well if that's the case, the void or the end of life/reality as we know it is exactly where we are going. I’d like to say I can see a specific message or symbol here but its quite the opposite in its vagueness. A cross of fire perhaps, it’s four lengths connecting inside what might represent a brain or some centre of consciousness symbol. Like all good artwork it is open to many interpretations so may not be of that much help but the name of the company and its goal is clear and I believe this tells us what we need to know.

This album is all about thought, deep abstract though to be precise. The email address includes this wording and the key word here is deep. In many ways this album is a balance to the previous emotion centred Lifestyles. This is where we continue our mental journey as set out on The Opening of the Cerebral Gate. But why is deep abstract thought so important? Well, if we have been following the instructions of the Storms so far we should now be more able to think deeply in this mental space as our thoughts are no longer confined to the everyday and have no limitations. But if anything this album seems to be more about preparatory work before the final ascent of evolution we are being lead to. What better way to practice this thought process than by imagining various, often humorous hypothetical situations?

There is a question after every track title in the artwork. ‘Bermuda Triangle’ - “What if the triangle pivoted over the island of Jamaica, what would become of the population?” I suppose this is implying that the population would disappear, but to where? We can take this as a good example of a question that leads to infinite possibilities and is therefore unknowable. In short, good material for practicing deep thought and in this case relevant to the Storm idea. The next track is also relevant to this subject. 'Synchronised Dimensions’ - “What if we existed within three planes of reality simultaneously?” Again another question of a similar type to get us thinking on those infinite and unknowable lines.‘Me Want Woman’s Punani’ - “What if for one week, male sex organs became petrified. How much punani could the average man consume?’ This is quite a strange image to get from Drexciya, it’s a subject we might more quickly connect with Gerald Donald and early Dopplereffekt though. Another healthy sign of a sense of humour in close proximity to the seriousness. ‘Consequences of Cloning’ -"What if they cloned the perfect human specimen, but did they clone the perfect god given spirit for this specimen?” This isn’t the first time clones have been mentioned during the Storm, ‘War of the Clones’ is a track on the first Transllusion album and later the subject is referenced on the Mice or Cyborg album by Lab Rat XL. I think from the evidence so far that Drexciya’s attitude to cloning would be to use caution if not outright disagreement. ‘Solar Pulse’ - “What if a solar flare ten thousand times larger than the average flare were emitted. How would this electromagnetic wave effect electrical and communications systems on Earth?” Well if we weren’t all vaporised we might have just a few difficulties with our appliances! ‘Galactic Rotation’ - “What if the galaxy were thrown off its normal cycle due to dark energy emissions from a black hole?” I guess chaos and possible destruction of the Earth would be the outcome. I suppose all the six questions cover a broad enough range of topics and all good subjects for deep thought practice.

The production credit this time reads, 'Beamed through Dimensional Waves by Abstract Thought'. I like the idea that the music is coming directly from a consciousness, which is the true nature of music in a way.
A new email address appears on this release as already mentioned. is the final email in the series and joins and from previous albums in the series so far. By the way no email addresses are found on Grava 4 or mention of Dimensional Waves. All of the addresses are now not operational now, I wish I had emailed them at the time now though. It seems strange that Drexciya put so much emphasis on these emails as they certainly aren’t the kind of band you expect to write you back or agree to do a show. So there must have been some good reason for them to make these addresses available. If anyone did email them and got any kind of response please let me know. It struck me lately that the phrase 'Ride Dimensional Waves' itself may mean to travel through each element of the seven storms, to be a dimensional wave jumper. In this context it might mean to move between each dimension with the ease of the adept, the goal, to glide between dimensions as learnt from 'Dimensional Glide' from Opening of the Cerebral Gate.

The music is outstanding, with some real dance floor friendly moments. There are only six tracks but they are all quite substantial. The album came out on The Advents Kombination Research label. There is a previous connection to The Advent which dates from about 1997 when two Dopplereffekt tracks were licensed by them for a compilation on the label, Kombination Phunk. A relationship was probably established at this point that remained active.

The next Storm is Mice or Cyborg by Lab Rat XL.


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