Tabs Out | C. Reider – … A Trustable Cloud

C. Reider – … A Trustable Cloud

2.13.20 by Ryan Masteller

Coloradan C. Reider’s been around for a long damn time, releasing all kinds of experimental music since the 1990s and overseeing his label Vuzh Music. On “… A Trustable Cloud,” Reider utilized only “sounds … made with free online instruments and effects processing that are playable within internet browsers,” a limitation that sounds fraught and whose results could very easily be laughably incoherent in the wrong hands. But Reider’s hands are not the wrong ones, and “… A Trustable Cloud” bursts into an experimental downpour of joyous weirdness. It’s not all samples of the Windows startup noise or the Taco Bell bell. Clearly I had no idea what to expect.

The tape is broken up into four long tracks on Bandcamp, but on tape it’s essentially one continuous piece, shifting in and out of tone and mood at will. At times resembling downtempo IDM and computer techno, Reider has enough Aphex Twin tricks up his sleeve to generate comparisons. But he also injects this thing with odd vocal tics and text-to-speech voices, as well as goofy sounds and washes of static and noise, that it really takes on an identity of its own. It’s like he’s been listening to some stupid outsider podcast or something and getting ideas, but actually using them in appropriate and artistic ways, not just triggering farts in the middle of a particularly introspective passage. (And yes, there are actually appropriate utilizations of certain technology. It’s not all just a joke.)

Toggling between concepts of actual, moisture-filled objects in the sky and the online repository where “everything that matters to you is supposed to be safely kept,” Reider also toggles between playfulness and seriousness, coming out on the side of imagination-as-a-way-forward. In this collection of “Utopian music about clouds and trust,” you might think it’d be easy to get bogged down in the heaviness of concept, but fortunately Reider is adept enough at navigating all the sounds he’s placed at his disposal that “… A Trustable Cloud” is as strikingly buoyant as its title would suggest, yet often dark and stormy as it’s wont to become. It’s a heckuva ride, and it’s definitely something you can place your faith in to kickstart that brain of yours into flights of fancy.

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