Arvo Zylo – 333 (CD-R, No Part of It)

333 is made up of simply a Yamaha RX1 sequencer and some requisite sounds along with it, but 333 doesn’t feel as limited as it really is. Arvo Zylo takes the listener through so many different areas of noise that, even during one track, it’s hard to express just where the track has been, and it’s also impossible to really gauge where it could go. That’s a great feeling, and 333 is full of it – the three tracks on here, ranging from a half an hour to 15 minutes or so, are totally different in structure and feeling, although they all have that signature sound of the RX1.

First track “Quicksand Eggs of a Beaten Pathos” is the longest, and it’s easily the best way to understand what Arvo Zylo is doing on this release. There are moments of digital-like trip-hop, rhythms that shudder and melt. There’s lots of synthesizer shuffling, but that’s really limiting how many different types of sounds Arvo Zylo gets out of the track; at times, the rhythms shift from music to noise, with little strands of static and percussive elements keeping a hold of the ideas, or at other times, bass-heavy beats and stuttery staccatos create a march of sound. It’s easily the best showcase of 333 because of its length, but it’s also a good song altogether, and 333 could have stood on its own with just this track.

It doesn’t though. “Deadbeat Deluxe” is similar to the first, but it’s more like a crazy carnival ride gone wrong with all of its strange synth twists and turns and odd beat structures. There are more additions to the sounds, and a good groove to boot. “Plasthma” is mostly minimal beatwork with less emphasis on bass, but towards the end it adds a really awesome, moody synth line to it that reminds me of old Tales from the Darkside themes. Very nice work indeed.

It’s another solid showing from Arvo Zylo, and very different at that. It might not appeal to those who don’t like more rhythmic noise, but the amount of sound generated from the limited instrumental use is quite amazing, and it also works well with the harmonies that 333 displays.

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