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CD Feature/ JVOX: "QED"

img  Tobias

I have often wondered why hip hop is held in such low esteem by friends of the avantgarde. After all, albums like “QED” are probably closer to the “new” than anything Stockhausen has written in the past twenty years. In the underground, far away from tiring MTV and its myriad of local offsets and competitors, a new generation of artists has found unique forms of expression and emancipated the instrumental version of the genre from a mere collection of “tracks” to the state of veritable, multifaceted compositions. And JVOX may be one of the few with the potential of connecting these intricate sounds to a larger audience.

He’s worked hard to get to that point: New York-based Joel Tallent (if that’s your real name why even bother with a pseudonym?) draws his inspiration from more than just the “scene”. He has released with the ambient and quirky electronica netlabel TonAtom, as well as with “emotional experimental” outfit N5md, displaying a vivid interest in moonwalking the greyzone between different styles without loosing his balance. The fact that “QED” doesn’t even sound weird, outlandish, freaky, over-the top or downright crazy on a first listen only goes to show that his mastery of moods and sounds equals that of a great director – if the viewers don’t recognise the special effects as such, you know you’ve attained perfection. When played in the background, this music is every inch as relaxed and lazy like as having a warm cup of tea on a rainy and cold winter’s morning. It is only as you zoom in that worlds of chaos and madness open up: Baby pianos played by a black cat, monotonous voices whispering in foreign tongues, spacey bleeps and blops, theremine-like minimal melodies, atonal chime cycles, random patterns, atomospheric interludes and a cinematic finale with heaving and breathing analog strings, everything moulded into accurate pieces of between two and five minutes’ length. What holds this explosive amalgam together are the beats: Drowsy, feverish, sleepwalking and filled with the same feeling of frightening seduction and allowing yourself to drop into a bottomless pit one experiences after two days without sleep, they coax and push the music forwards and glue the disparate elements together.

At the same time, they are the very reason this album will once again be ignored by the cultural elite. As long as you can still dream to his music, JVOX will remain outside of classical concert halls. Surely, that need not matter. As the old temples crumble, a new rule will take hold, establishing its own infrastructure. “QED” is one of the first harbingers of that rule.

By Tobias Fischer

Homepage: JVOX
Homepage: Ad Noiseam Records


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