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Eye of Delirious Jakub Knera , March 15th, 2023 09:30

From Odesa, sound artist Ganna Bryzhata evokes the hazy ambience of the "Black Sea Paris"

The Muscut label, celebrating its 11th anniversary, describes its music of interest as ‘pseudo-archaeology’. On their website, you can see a fabricated photograph showing the uncovering of a cassette tape during excavation. Their releases focus as much on the music as the quality of the sound itself – how the equipment and methodology influence its texture and timbre, what are the side effects of the medium, and what the impact of analogue instrumentation would be.

Looking at the catalog, you’ll find input on meditative structures, hunting loops, or specific archaic sounds. Nikolaienko uses a tape player and an old reel-to-reel recorder balancing musique concrète, loops, and pulsating motifs. Nikolaev makes mesmerizing synth passages, whereas Eyot Tapes incorporates cassette loops, spring reverbs, tape delays, and a modular synthesizer. As a result, they create hazy compositions packed with delay effects and reverbs, often based on swirling loops.

Bryozone, the project of Odesa-based sound artist Ganna Bryzhata, follows a similar path. Until now, she released two EPs in 2016 but also plays bass guitar, creating psychedelic dub trips in the trio Chillera. Eye of Delirious offer transcends haunting and dreamlike landscapes to provide a peculiar tale. By its atmosphere, it’s difficult to disconnect it from Odesa, a sunny resort known as the Black Sea Paris or the ‘city of dreams’ as Charles King wrote.

Bryzhata has recorded a heterogeneous album that sometimes draws a little on the ephemeral atmosphere created by William Basinski or Philip Jeck in their looping pieces. Her hazy ambient strands in ‘Smoothy Flow’ are reminiscent of the feeling of decay present in the music of the two mentioned composers, leaning towards monotonous impressionistic waves, as in ‘Ambiency’. In ‘Glowing Sirens’, the glitchy melody transforms into metallic ambient and creates a ghostly sound, mimicking something vaguely identifiable. ‘Sequence One’ reminds me of a stuttering record, a looped piece, an artifact that brings back memories.

However, she does not fall into the obvious cliché of a hazy, indistinct, and impressionistic aesthetic – the neatly arranged compositions assemble into a diverse mosaic. She breaks ambient, dreamlike tracks with underlined beats. There is a moment of cracking the impressionistic suspension in the style of Deadbeat’s or Sun Araw’s dub synth beats, as in the pulsating trance of ‘Sub Nautica’. Sometimes it veers towards rhythmic, quasi-tribal forms as in ‘Ghost of Tribe’.

Fortunately Bryozone is not singing and not going in a dream-pop direction – this is a non-obvious, evocative, in a way visual, and narrative soundtrack to the journey to the Black Sea coast. Or elsewhere in the middle of hot summer, as this album with scraps of rhythm, melodies, and hazy vision of sunny afterimages catch with a very impressive and suggestive story.