メディカル – UNDERDOSE
Wanna be sedated? Listen to UNDERDOSE by メディカル.1 It embodies the essence of the Acid Medical label: semi-kitschy visual aesthetics with long yet suddenly ending drone tracks. Along with killkore, UNDERDOSE comprises the lengthiest and songs of the Acid Medical library, sounding like the final put-under before a possibly life-threatening surgery, where the mind wonders whether or not it will wake up again.
Perhaps that metaphor borders on pretentiousness. However, for such torpid music, it’s amazing how UNDERDOSE is such a weighty and emotional experience. The shortest song on the album (not counting the ten/twenty-second interludes) is also the most somber: there’s something about the murmuring keys on “Rejected” that’s stirring, similar to the guitar/glitch drone of the Pairings collaboration between Manning / Novak.2 “他人になりたい” and “デジタルセルフ” are even more anodyne. They are genuinely peaceful tracks. Neither of them attempt to unsettle or disturb the listener; they’re simply soothing and relaxing. Maybe a little melancholic, but it’s the melancholy of being in the pre-op room and wondering whether these off-pink walls are the last thing one will see, not Death Cab for Cutie melancholy.
UNDERDOSE is one of the standards to which modern drone music should hold itself. Perhaps the album’s concept is being overstated in this article, but the affect is not. Listen to it for a wonderful take on the expressiveness of cyberpunk music with neither words nor beat.
1. 11 – (0:10)
2. Rejected – (3:58)
3. Star Girl – (0:23)
4. 他人になりたい – (27:07)3
5. デジタルセルフ – (10:54)4
1Japanese translation: “Medical”
2Highly recommended. Check it out on Dragon’s Eye Recordings here.
3Japanese translation: “I want to be someone else”
4Japanese translation: “Digital self”