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Accelera Deck. Sunstrings ep. CD

digital reissue edition available from - - - LATHELIGHT LTD - - -

Following on the heels of 2003's Ipsissima Vox, Accelera Deck (aka Chris Jeely) delivers a 30 minute ep of guitar feedback sonorities. In much the same way a split speaker created a fascinating "new" guitar sound, Jeely's digitally clipped guitar ponderings lend a unique character to his sound. At times the guitar oscillates freely, notes are bent and shaken, new clusters emerge, loops spiral out of control, feedback overwhelms......
File Under: Beautiful Noise.

+ 33 minutes of music released on the 3rd day of the 3rd month with catalog number 33

01. Dross
02. Sunstrings
03. 777
04.

|: cover by Cataract Press

Reviews

Sunstrings ep is No. 11 for May 2004 on free103point9

Accelera Deck's Sunstrings EP opens like a late-night panic attack, like a power-plant explosion in the middle of nowhere, like all of the world's computers shorting out at once. A fuzzed-out soundwave gets clearer and louder, then gives way to a mad mess of fighting lightning bolts - jittery and harsh yet entrancing enough to stop you in your tracks. Think of the peaceful horror of that scene in the film The Ice Storm, where the electrical wire comes loose and winds its way through the air - take that feeling, shred it up, and amplify it by a million. Then you'll be getting close to the horrific sort of beauty generated by Sunstrings's 17-minute, hardcore first track (hardcore even as the noise attack sometimes gives way to silence, and to more intermittent but still sharp buzzing sounds, and to an assortment of other noises nearly impossible to describe). Keep your ears open; this is not a one-note EP. The second half leans away from the same sort of chaos, towards more of an overwhelming but steady cloud of brilliant noise. The Sunstrings EP is an extremely exciting voyage, a wild trip off to some other, other planet, far away from most people's existence. Enjoy it, sink into it, let your mind try to figure it out. But don't even start thinking about the fact that so many of these sounds were generated from a guitar, or your head will explode.
dave heaton, erasing clouds

This May 2004 release follows the ‘Ipsissima Vox? LP and seeks a welcome unrest in a wash of guitar feedback sonorities that oscillate, warp & disquise notes, form clusters, spiral in maladroit loops and finally yield to overwhelming feedback. Four tracks here, alternately dense/sparse, including contained chaos ( # 1), screened filtration creating an abyss of micro-tonalities aside aggressive drone ( # 2), brief reverberations ( # 3) and bleeding & blended beats mondo laborious ( # 4). From gradual/infinitesimal to sudden/enormous, these Chris Jeely- scapes are difficult listening & perplexing in concept - yet giant steps toward noise artistry.
Mitch - KFJC Online

Clusters of crispy crackling crunchy sounds, sometimes sounding like vinyl surface noise, other times sampled sounds processed beyond recognition. Skittering radio fuzz and flutter, scraping tinkling and needle sharp microscopic nerve ending patterns. Unreeling waves slide around the stereo field like nearly amorphous shapes sliding though your headphones. Elsewhere he employs a broader stroke, with sustained droning tones that gradually shift. The final track is mostly silence with tiny insect-like sounds that flutter like gnats. The solo project of Chris Jeely of Birmingham, Alabama; these soundscapes feel like an exploration of the surface of a series of strange haunted electronic planets.
George Parsons. Dream Magazine #5

As far as electronic re-workings of sounds done by electric guitar go, this is as completely the opposite of Fennesz as I have heard. And then again also not. Is that a little contradictive? Well, better get used to it. It is not the only hazard to your as of yet still innocent mind. This EP is part nerve-wrecking, part soothing and then part nerve-wrecking again, but it might help to induce some currents into your feeble thoughts so as to make you a better person. Or something. I have a hard time remembering things because of all the little blue pills and the endless sundowns and everybody calling me “Neo”. Better get used to it.
This is the boss doing it himself. (No, not “The Boss”, the boss of Scarcelight Records, Chris Jeely.) Does he, as bosses will do sooner or later, follow rules such as “if you want to have it done right, you gotta do it yourself”? I don’t think so, because then there wouldn’t be any other artists on his label. To me, Chris Jeely, sounds more like a “A job worth doing is worth doing well” kind of guy. That might be the reason, why at 49 minutes this hardly an EP in the proper sense (though the 49 minutes include a “hidden” track of about 15 minutes all in all.) One more aside before I move onto the music: according to the info available this is “33 minutes of music released on the 3rd day of the 3rd month with catalog number 33”. Does that satisfy the numerologically inclined autist in everyone? It does with mine. Like the 8” - 8artists - 8minutes per record – limited to 5x8 exclusively – record series by Dhyana-records. A neat idea.
The first quarter of an hour track, called “dross” is hacked, psyched and manically changing noise. At first I thought Masonna, but it was more structured and a little less excessive, but then everything is less excessive than Masonna. Actually hard to listen to due its constant changing of tonality and eruptive bursts of noise. Mostly consisting of one or two layers of sounds, the track leaves open a lot of spaces, and if the high frequencies don’t get you, the punch between milliseconds of silence and full noise will do theirs. Kind of like the tracks that Kid606 recorded with a broken harddisc, only less lush and with less input. A true party-wrecker. I like it.
After that, the second track starts off with one big wall of sound that is like a beautiful red sun you can fall into and all you’ll feel is warmth. After about five minutes the pressure of noise starts to fade until there is but a slight trickling of sounds gently moving in the background. Guess, does it work its way up again from there. Nope, it just sort of trickles away completely. “Sunstrings”, as this piece is called, is my personal highlight on this record, because there are truly beautiful arrangements of gentle sounds into big big buildings of noise but also just softly flowing streams. Perfectly crafted to fall asleep to: at first a blanket of sound wraps you, comforting you as fully as you have never experienced. And then it slowly gets dowzier, softer and quieter while you fall asleep deeper and deeper. Nighty-night.
Track #3 is just a really short something, that I seem to have missed completely. Hm, strange. Sucked into a time-warp again? I could tell you, that it is called “777” though – so maybe some reverse Satanism-thing?
Next on are some strange bleeps and peeps, weird patterns and crackling noises, that open up the hidden and untitled track number for about half of the fifteen minutes it lasts. Nerve-wrecking spaces of nothing between short shriecks of sounds that you can almost here trying to work themselves through firewalls of filters, levels and other gadgets and almost every attempt being futile. And those little sounds that are able to make it through alive and start to exist sonically fade away as fast as little sparks of light. Think of an open fire, with a little ashes flying, but without the fire itself. Then it gets a little more dense, with some rhythms building up – or is that my mind desperately craving for something it can hook on? – and then… nothing. For quite some time and with a final ping it all ends.
The music is all made up of sounds from an electric guitar, reworked and mangled by oscillator and computer. Most of the time you wouldn’t be able to guess it is a guitar you are listening, too. It is hard to believe even if you know it. Towards the end of track one it gets clearer. And the beginning of the second track could almost be Jesus and Mary Chain gone over the top and frozen in a time capsule. Or My Bloody Valentine trying to play heavy music. Is the source of the sounds you are listening to really important? If it an electric guitar I’d say yes, because it is the single most important musical instrument come to bloom in the last century. We are yet to see what this century can do with computers and samplers, but in the meantime I am convinced that there is still a lot of live and new ideas to be scraped from the good old six-string.
I imagine Accelera Deck playing live either standing almost hidden in a darkened corner, maybe a little up a stairway or in full flashing light on a real stage with computers and cables all around him. In the first scenario it would be hard to make out the connection between the guy playing that guitar and the bursts of noise and sounds bombarding the listener’s ears. In the second scenario the connection would be quite obvious. Both are great, ironic and post-modern statements about the meaning of rock-guitarists as icons in music. As iconografic as Jimi Hendrix burning his still amplified and droning guitar or Derek Bailey getting all epileptic and cryptic over his acoustic stringset or Leonid Soybelman putting yet another pair of forks and spoons between his strings. (Is this proof that the public lost interest after Jimi Hendrix and the Kirk Hammets and Joe Satirianis took over the lead in the public eye?) Am I taking it too far now? Maybe so, but on the one hand, I could talk about the power of the axe for even longer than that. And the way it will be treated and formed in the future.
All in all, this record leaves me puzzled and wondering about many things, which is good. Is this a trail of music that has a future or is it a (terribly interesting and large) cul-de-sac? Well, most of the time I’ll put this on, it’ll be with track #2 programmed, but anyway. The devastation and the broken nerves will heal again and the experience will pay me well.
Cracked 12/2004

With three pieces totaling thirty-three minutes plus a fifteen-minute hidden track, Chris Jeely’s 2004 Sunstrings ‘EP’ seems an oddity even before a note sounds. Using guitar, oscillator, and computer, Jeely generates a corrosive roar in the seventeen-minute opener “Dross,” yet its crushing arsenal of noise is amazing if not necessarily pleasant. This writhing excursion fractures into prickly caterwauls of abrasive splatter, grinding glissandi, and thorny swarms—the sonic portrait of a machine writhing in pain as it’s torn to pieces. Coming after “Dross,” the cresting waves and ringing overtones of the fifteen-minute drone “Sunstrings” sound downright musical. At less than a minute, “777” is little more than a few scattered bleeps, while a hidden track presents scattered flickers of rustles and scrapes that gradually coalesce into overlapping babble.
Ron Schepper, January Rubber Room Volume 4, Stylus Magazine

To call this an EP is a bit of a misrepresentation. While it is only four songs (really, only 3 because one is less than a minute long), it still clocks in at nearly 50 minutes. Which is longer than many full lengths.
In any case, this is crammed with utterly damaged and fucked laptop noises. The first track is far from any elements of drone that often find their way into electronic noise. This track actively destroys the source sounds. In the broad sense, there are endless repetitions, but when listened to carefully, this is a constantly shifting, continually different deconstruction of sound. The second track builds a dense wall to mask the delayed guitar wandering somewhere behind before crashing down, reduced to a murky warble. The last track is minimal with quick bursts of random tone, and plenty of dead air between. Rather than the usual fire storm, this approach burns in patches.
While the audience for a record like this is small, but the emergence of Wolf Eyes as a somewhat commercially viable (check Ebay for insane prices on their out of print CDRs) band, it's apparently growing. So, for those looking for more, this is a fine platter (from a long established source) to fry your brain on.
Dick Baldwin, Foxy Digitalis

From blistering electronic circuits melting to calmer experimental tweaks. Accelera Deck tortures their instruments and turn out static-y sounds with the original sound still there, but heavily manipulated. Some tracks are full and dense, a near white wall of Japanese style noise, while other tracks are super minimal and have occasional bursts. Not techno, not electronica, although made with electronics, this is experimental-type stuff.
Don Poe - Ear/Rational Music

The “Sunstrings” CD EP clocks in about 50 minutes - more CDEPs like this, please! This time Chris Jeely only employs the guitar, oscillator, and computer. The music was recorded in late 2003, however, the three tracks (plus one hidden) differ much from each other! The over 17 minute long opener, “Dross” is quite a big, and bitter, pill to swallow – it feels like riding over pathless tracts; we clash against lots of stones, patches of grass, and fall into some holes. Thus the track leads us through brushes of guitar feedback, distortion, tweaking, bleeps, noise blasts, abrasive sounds, snippets & junk, white noises. A wide range of Chris' capabilities in generating noise. Oh damn! The second track comes in! Believe me, it's worth digging through the quarter of the hour for your ears to experience catharsis in another long-run opus “Sunstrings”! Beautiful noise that falls down on you like rain - one, massive and sustained torrent of sound! Excellent! Alas, after the first five minutes, the pace slows down and the torrent turns into a stream of modulated sound with tweaked tunes and a little distortion. I hardly noticed the third track in the very first listening sessions - a few seconds of climbing up, and falling down a single sound. To pronounce its title “777” takes not much less time than the track itself lasts! And the final, “hidden” track is a sort of lowercase music, or glitch music in that very obvious way - single bleeps, scratches, whistlings, snippets... With “Sunstrings” Chris Jeely proves his flexible approach to his interests in making music. Continued research brings him more acclaims than bad marks from the reviewers! He is keeping up the good level.
krzysztof sadza, Eld Rich Palmer

Two more recent releases on Chris Jeely's (Accelera Deck's) Scarcelight Recordings. One of them is his own called 'Sunstrings' EP, but it's almost 50 minutes. It says on the cover that Chris uses guitar, oscillator and computer. The guitar sound can be heard in the second most noisy track, but it's hardly recognizable (or not at all) in the others. The first and the last track (there are 3 titles on the cover and 4 tracks on the cd) are along the lines of the cut-up glitchy/noisy sound, like Pita or like Evol's release on Scarcelight, but with different dynamics and means. Accelera Deck is more comfortable on the impressionistic side of noise here, or in a more musical term that would be a special kind of shoegaze noise, with much more lap-top, cut-up and more thrown around than the regular, of course. The third track is very short, only few seconds, so maybe that doesn't count as a track? I don't know, but I like it as the others. My Bloody Valentine should like this too (and Sonic Youth could learn few nice noisy tricks).
Vital Weekly 448

Guitar experimental ambient and noise with a nod to laptop noise/click and cut artists, Accelera Deck uses the first of four tracks with guitar to create an alternately dense and sparse field of sudden sounds and patterns. This effort is revisted throughout the record, albeit only in a minor way for the beautifully spacious fifteen minute total ambient piece that makes the second track. This one gets lifted up into grandiose and heroic guitar melodies, exquisite ambient. The last piece is a total mystery, with long spaces of complete silence, then gradual tiny tones, then violent clutters of noise, then squeaking nothings resounding. It says EP, but it's actually fifty minutes of material. It's hard to say that Accelera Deck were trying to "get anywhere" with this record, but it does seem to explore a certain unnameable sort of style and attitude. I find it totally bewildering and unguessable, and that's a good thing
Manifold Catalog

After 2003's Ipsissima Vox (Scarcelight Recordings) Accelera Deck (Chris Jeely) once again takes to his most unconventional guitar work to crash land his new Sunstrings EP. Opening with the contained chaos of a scribbly seventeen-minute "Dross," Jeely's goal is to fully emasculate the untamed inherent power of his instrument by oscillating it into submission. This effect has developed harmonious possibilities, probably some quite haphazard. The end result is a fully elongated sense of dancing lines and dots that pixelate and draw in finite synchronicities. At almost 50 minutes this is lengthy for any ordinary EP, but no complaints here - only an urgency for more of the same please. The title track takes what one could imagine to be a Spiritualized jam, process it finely in La Machine and cross breed it with a level of screened filtration techniques that leave only an abyss of random micro-tonalities amid the in your face drone. "777" is less than a minute of nothing but a few single reverberations, a sound out and a big open space as a prelude to the final untitled track which takes paced cricket-like spikes and brings them closer together as the fifteen and a half minutes bleed, blend and ultimately become structured, lined-up beats to be reckoned with. It's click, click, blip, shree, click, crunch, pah start off quite easy to watch as the sounds, like popcorn jut into the empty void, but if you are wearing headphones be forewarned that this eventually becomes quite ear-popping about half way through - it's a welcome unrest.
TJ Norris. Igloo Mag Microview Volume 6

This May 2004 release follows the “Ipsissima Vox” LP and seeks a welcome unrest in a wash of guitar feedback sonorities that oscillate, warp & disquise notes, form clusters, spiral in maladroit loops and finally yield to overwhelming feedback. Four tracks here, alternately dense/sparse, including contained chaos ( # 1), screened filtration creating an abyss of micro-tonalities aside aggressive drone ( # 2), brief reverberations ( # 3) and bleeding & blended beats mondo laborious ( # 4). From gradual/infinitesimal to sudden/enormous, these Chris Jeely- scapes are difficult listening & perplexing in concept – yet giant steps toward noise artistry.
MITCH Aug 2004 - KFJC online reviews

Chris Jeely's Accelera Deck project has seen a lot of changes. His early incarnation as an obvious Autechre re-tread gave way to a more interesting and more unique version that worked cut up beats and layers of guitar together in ways we might have always hoped Kevin Shields would get around to trying. Having seen Accelera Deck live a few months back, I knew that a new release was likely to be a lot of processed live instrument sound with little structure or apparent motivation, but even that foreknowledge couldn't have prepared me for the wankfest that opens up his newest disc, Sunstrings. In fact, the track "Dross" nearly perfectly sums up for me all of the things that are putrid and reprehensible about the intersection of technology and music in the hands of people who assume we should give a damn. Whether the source of "Dross" is Jeely's guitar or his hard drive, or some contact mics on African Killer Bees having their wings torn off or the subsonic rubmlings of seismic events around the equator, no amount of explanation or theoretical discourse can save it from being 15 of the worst minutes of recorded music I have ever had the misfortune of experiencing. It's not that Jeely doesn't come up with some cool twerps and buzzes and noises; he mangaes to create a whole catalog of them in the service of "Dross." There's sample fodder to spare here for kids wanting that glitch-core sound but who aren't equipped to arrive at it the old fashioned way. The problem is, there is a complete lack of any purpose, feeling, direction, or consequence to the track that meanders along with the mouse and keystrokes that are obviously creating it. Hell, if this was being composed by a robot Jeely built in his Alabama flat making music based on an algorhithm that decrypts Fantastic Four comic books and turns the plotlines into audio... I DON'T CARE because at the end of it, it still sounds like a total waste of time! "Dross" must be Jeely's middle finger aimed at his listeners, because when he actually tries to make a good piece of music as he does with "Sunstrings," he is more than capable. The beautifully rich tones and distorted crackle of processed guitar in "Sunstrings" make "Dross" seem that much more abhorent. Get to the point man! There's some subtle, wonderful work in the second track of this curious EP, but it's unfortunately sandwiched between digital masturbation that has no business being recorded or released by anyone. The third track is but a click and whimper, then its on to the fourth track, but since only three titles are listed, I can only assume this is a mastering mistake. And who could blame the guy for wondering where the music starts or stops with the laborious "777." It's nothing short of a glitch collection all trotted out with huge gaps that make it seem like a mistake. If this were a playful game of musical connect the dots, I'd understand, but it sounds more like someone fucking off in Audiomulch and again, no theory (though thankfully, none is presented) could render this enjoyable or enlightening in the least. This should have been a one-track "Sunstrings" single; hopefully there's more like that available in the future.
Matthew Jeanes. Brainwashed.