by Jute Gyte

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Several tracks on this album feature multiple simultaneous tempi, something I haven't previously explored aside from triplets (a 3:2 tempo ratio) and hemiolas (a 2:3 ratio). The coda of the first track features a tempo ratio of 7:8, with seven beats to a measure in the guitars and 808 and eight beats to a measure in the bass, drums and processed rhythm. The closeness of the 7:8 ratio creates a rhythmic interference pattern or “dissonance”—the ear expects resolution in the form of one tempo either slowing or accelerating to match the other and establish a common pulse. Other tracks use more complex ratios, like the 4:5:6:7 ratio at the most complex point of “I Am in Athens”. With four simultaneous tempi, unlike two, the feeling of being pulled towards a resolution dissipates, perhaps because there are so many possible resolutions, and the rhythmic aggregate stabilizes. “Palimpsest” doesn't use multiple tempi but is structured around a consistent 33-beat hypermeter, something I haven't used before in my metal work. I've been writing music in shifting meters for so long that having a single hypermeter governing an entire track seemed almost like cheating; having every part of the track last 33(n) beats allowed me to interrelate the track's sections to a greater degree than I usually manage. These rhythmic strategies are part of a long-term goal to unite aspects of my electronic work, which uses process-based gradient structures and is concerned primarily with rhythm and timbre (see Dialectics), and my black metal work, which is pitch-oriented and structured in traditional discrete sections.

The pitch content that opens “Woodcutter” is a microtonal extension of the opening theme of Brahms' first piano quartet, though it's not easy (or necessary) to hear the source in the final arrangement. The guitars play transformations of this material created through standard serial operations and also by winding or spiraling through a complete or partial array as if it were a labyrinth, a technique of Ursula Mamlok's described in Straus's Twelve-Tone Music in America. The opening section of “Consciousness” is a sequence of ninth chords expanding microtonally from darkest/most compact to brightest/broadest. A few of the riffs on this album are sound collages inspired by Inquisition, who often brilliantly alternate between several playing styles in a single 2-4 measure riff. I recorded myself improvising in a few different performance styles (slide, harmonics, arpeggios, palm-muting), chopped up the improvisations into samples and collaged them into riffs. The riff that opens “I Am in Athens” was inspired by the feedback-punctuated riffs of bands like Grief and Eyehategod.

“At the Limit of Fertile Land” is from Boulez's nod to Klee. “Like the Woodcutter Sawing His Hands” is a phrase from Renée Riese Hubert's “Three Women Poets: Renée Rivet, Joyce Mansour, Yvonne Carouth.” The title “Consciousness Is Nature's Nightmare” is from Cioran's Tears and Saints by way of D.F. Wallace's late masterpiece “The Suffering Channel” and the title “I Am in Athens and Pericles Is Young” is from Frank Belknap Long's “The Hounds of Tindalos,” though I can't exactly recommend the story. The line “white stone in the white sunlight” is from Jack Gilbert's “Ovid in Tears.” The image behind the ouroboros on the cover is an x-ray of Rembrandt's De Staalmeesters.


released June 6, 2016

Created January 2013 - December 2015



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Jute Gyte Missouri

“The conscious experience of being a subject arises when a single organism learns to enslave itself.”
– Thomas Metzinger

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Track Name: At the Limit of Fertile Land
Mesmerized by the outline of a shadow cast by a phantom
This torn wet-smelling hallucination of the body
a pitiful remnant torn from weak old fingers
The smoke trembling under the roof
The sound of wind against the elm
The thin perilous condition of negative entropy
Discourse is not life
Its time is not ours
These are the arrows that kill sleep in the night at all hours
The flood is gone, the ebb has come
Track Name: The Harvesting of Ruins
We infer, rather than perceive
The remembered present
The harvesting of ruins
A regress that always ends in darkness
Finite provinces of meaning
The moment already far away
Blind keys spin
Horns echo backward
Time is an abyss
Track Name: Like the Woodcutter Sawing His Hands
I cannot tell the true riddle of my own self
The great fleet of thorns
The tumult of inner voices
Mindlessly persisting
The hours that assail all things
Every second is a cage
Every action is a cage
Every reason is a cage
Anguish is alone
Its supposed companion a ghost
Track Name: Palimpsest
Disposable morphology
Caving in the cage of my body
Sarcophagus full of black water
The galling sense of intolerable restraint
Straying through an infinite nothing
Wasted youth chained to this tomb
Torn away from that self who could do more
Yearning to crawl in among the machinery
Rain over black algae
Charred crucibles
Track Name: Consciousness Is Nature’s Nightmare
New vermin blood in old vermin skin
That true secret whispered to a fence of reeds
Driven over the bones of the dead
Repetition like a curse
Ice moving across the earth
Tangled within a feedback loop
Worms in spacetime
Knotted by habit
What shapes do we express?
We are the damned, damned by the will to live
Track Name: I Am in Athens and Pericles Is Young
White stone in the white sunlight
The labyrinth of remembrance
The empty stony maze
Killing memories with a sharpened awl
Killing the moments to come
Beyond good and evil
Beyond freedom and dignity
No standard, no security, no simple acquiescence
I am in Athens and Pericles is young