Local Music Reviews February 2016

Local Music Review: Monol!th / God Walk – Self-Titled

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Monol!th / God Walk – Self-Titled

Monol!th / God Walk
Self-Titled

Gym
Street: 11.21.15
Monol!th / God Walk = Jonn Serrie + Silent Servant

Released digitally and on cassette by local newcomer label, Gym, Monol!th / God Walk is as cinematic as it is peculiar. Ranging greatly in sound, instrumentation and general urgency, the usefulness of the split album is to neatly juxtapose two groups of equal ability, find solidarity in a common goal and combine two different fan-bases—goals this split album no doubt accomplishes, yet not without putting the listener through a rather elaborate listening experience. With each side running very near the 30-minute mark, this split is damn near close enough to warrant an individual album release each.

Yet all formatting concerns aside, the whole has a natural evolution about it: On one side Monol!th provides tidy, elegant, space travel–reminiscent sounds—think Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey—and God Walk embrace a more gritty programming and synonymously dirty percussive tone. The Monol!th side opens up with a rush of deep saw synth, that ebbs and flows with calculated running blips dancing over the hum—an arrangement that inseparably reminds one of certain Daft Punk tracks. The tracks go on to include some daring bass flanges—wiggling wiggling wiggling—and proceeds to heavily border on sounds we may or may not have heard from Floyd’s Wish You Were Here. I found the attention to detail and subtly on the Monol!th side vastly impressive: each sound is handled with enough production know-how to keep the moving parts distinguishable from each other.

The God Walk side takes a more scattered approach, though in a warmly welcomed way. God Walk opens with a grandly expansive synth that devolves into background noise as heavily modulated voices begin to croon and brood over the track—touching here, again, on something bordering Daft Punk. With more straightforward aggression and affinity for percussion, God Walk take us on a journey through African wood lead numbers, tracks backed by hard hitting hip-hop beats and raindrop oriented sounds, and eventually land us in a place where atmospheric jungle sounds meet trance and deep house music—the perfect mixture of everything we knew and didn’t know we needed. Monol!th / God Walk has a wide-eyed wonder about it, as if meeting the uncharted ridge for the first time: This wonder is not lost on a willing and patient audience. –Z. Smith