THE SOUNDS OF PSEUDOSCIENCE | REVIEWS
Four years in the making, Nikolaienko’s retrogarde take on mid-20th century tape music is a loping, whirling fuzzy felt oscillator odyssey. If Louis and Bebe Barron had been asked to create electronic tonalities for a Czech animation based on EM Forster’s The Machine Stops, the results may have turned out like this. Only, for all its nods to Parmegiani and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop, one can’t quite see this album coming out in 1956 – or even 1976. Something about the slightly off kilter rhythms, the loose feel and wheezing sound effects make this very much a post-Dilla take on Raymond Scott and his successors.- The Wire - 2016
Recent interpretations and reissues of early electronic music have become all the more captivating in recent years. As there are very few boundaries as to what an ‘electronic album’ might now constitute, the way we perceive the projection of this evolving craft is drastically altering. From the Recollection GRM series to Ben Zimmerman’s adventure in Tandy DeskMate programming, the exploration of specific equipment and a desire to recontextualize early electronic works are yielding some fascinating results.
Ukrainian sound artist Dmytro Nikolaienko is taking that notion to new heights with The Sounds Of Pseudoscience, his second full-length and first release working alongside Mark Templeton’s Graphical Recordings. The album, pitched as “a tribute to early-electronics’ golden era,” takes on a fragmented aesthetic of bleeps, thunks and jolts that secrete the concentrated focus of a fantastical laboratory. Nikolaienko plays on regional stereotypes that conjure imagery of the most intensive experimentation in a context of impeccably arranged aural sequences.
The first video to come from the Pseudoscience archive is called “Under The Integral.” It’s a grainy amalgamation of spheres, static and subtle manipulation and it details the contrast of a known unknown — images that are familiar in their immediate form but symbolise a world most mysterious. It’s a hypnotic blend the combines an infatuation for atoms beneath a microscope with a voyage into the darkest depths of the ocean.
The Sounds Of Pseudoscience will be released on June 26 by Graphical Recordings and Nikolaienko’s own Muscut label. Pre-orders of the 12” LP are up for grabs now.- BIRKUT- Tiny Mix Tapes - June 2015
Back in June, the dude Birkut premiered the video for Nikolaienko’s “Under The Integral,” taken off his second full-length The Sound Of Pseudoscience. The album — constructed from a passion of “early electronics’ golden era” and built with a laundry list of Soviet era pedals, tape manipulations, and synthesizers — was released in June through Graphical Recordings and Nikolaienko’s own Muscut label. The album itself is stellar, boasting an eerie H.P. Lovecraft audiobook-tracking aesthetic, and the background story is equally compelling. As Nikolaienko explains:
I have been obsessed with digging, researching and listening to the archives of early electronic, library, exotica, science fiction and soviet documentary soundtracks since I released my debut albumLoops & Cuts Soup in 2010 on Nexsound. Being under the influence of those themes, I decided to reinterpret and fabricate those aesthetics. As a result, I recorded The Sound Of Pseudoscience co-published by GRAPHICAL/Muscut, made a video for the track “Under The Integral,” and designed the album cover in such retrospective direction. The music is intended to sound like a library soundtrack for a scientific documentary that does not exist, that’s why many of my tracks are 2-3 minutes in length.
The early electronic influences Nikolaienko mentioned were narrowed down to the most influential of The Sound Of Pseudoscience and compiled into a mixtape. The 30 minutes below are as much a backstage tour of Nikolaienko’s work as a brief, selected history of paleo electronics – take the rabbit hole!
Stream the mix below, and subscribe to our podcast here.- Monet Maker- Tiny Mix Tapes - August 2015