Oscuro – I (3″ CD-R, Textural Nightmares)

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Oscuro is an interesting wall noise project from Julien Skrobek, right now comprised of just two releases simply titled and II. Both were released on the Textural Nightmares label, which, after four releases, now appears to be defunct. On I, Oscuro offers one stoic untitled track that clocks in just under twenty minutes.

“Untitled” is what many would call an ambient noise wall, comprised of an overwhelming airy tone at the forefront of the wall that is actually quite difficult to withstand for the 19:12 length of time. The tone is tough to describe, but for me it’s something akin to the blurry noise that a car window makes when opened slightly at high speeds. That is paired with low volume crackling static that is at times barely audible beneath the whirr, adding crunchy texture to this piece.

It’s interesting to hear how Oscuro manages to craft something so minute and also searing, a wall that doesn’t have much heft but also makes for a rather engaging and difficult listen. One complaint is that I wish the static crackle was just a tad bit louder, enough to overcome some of the droning whirlwind of the airy forefront of the wall. With its lower tone, it’s easy to miss the nuance in that droning, something that one has to focus intently on anyway.

Otherwise, Oscuro’s is an interesting and quick listen, one solidly built ambient piece that showcases Oscuro’s more minimal approach to the craft while not overextending its welcome. Unless you managed to grab this when it released, it looks like you’re out of luck hearing it – it’s not even up on Julien Skrobek’s Bandcamp page (though Oscuro’s II is).

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