MOS FET & Eustress – These Days

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These Days is a supernatural 1-900 partyline portal.

An occult dimension, where feverish apparitions materialize before spiraling fog, wheezing winds, and flickering lights. Horns bellow, gasses squelch, and lightly brushed rusty strings reverberate, as blurred lights stagger past. You know; spooky.

Each poltergeist tells their story, mise-en-scène, building an ethereal, holographic world; a narrative vision. The impressions are like wordless dramas, with action and adventure. Another specter interrupts, with their own finely crafted mytho, as the optical

anecdotes of the previous speaker weightlessly fall away and fade into the nether. Each expression is a personal narrative, but breadcrumbs spread throughout each theme, connects the tales: There is a magic in the matrix.

And just like that, a sleight of hand trick, after all, what appeared as a ritual séance, is a mirror holding a reflection of These Days.

Album Review

We’re already on shaky ground. According to Jollies, “‘These Days’ is a supernatural 1-900 party portal … Each poltergeist tells their story …” You would think that a tape label would be smart enough to avoid dabbling in such scary subject matter, but maybe it’s the relative youth of the label that’s compelled them to ignore such common sense. This is only their fifth release after all, so maybe we can cut them a LITTLE slack. Also, the label is based in Brooklyn, so maybe years of seeing firsthand how easy it i to hunt and contain ghosts have removed any sort of negative stigma toward them. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, “Ghostbusters” has desensitized an entire generation to things that people should have a deep aversion toward.

Still, the things that scare us most can surely also fascinate us, which is where MOS FET and Eustress come in. The duo, like a spirit-hunting Mulder and Scully (or maybe like a normal Shaggy and Scooby-Doo), seek to contact the entities of the spirit realm, and they do so through ritual-like ambience. Indeed, the dark synthesizer drones conjure the same type of atmosphere as a séance would, mist descending on the participants as the veil between worlds grows thinner and thinner with each passing moment. The synths, like chants, awaken the apparitions, or at least make them aware of our presence. Then the fun begins, as they start to interact with objects in the room, some rhythmically, some abruptly and, dare I say, scarily.

All that stuff moving around, and nobody there to move it. Wow!

“These Days” is music for the dearly departed, those blissfully whiling away eternity, minding their own business, and drifting contentedly through unseen realms. It’s only when they are summoned that they become agitated, and MOS FET and Eustress are good at agitating them. Here, then, is the sound of my nightmares come to life, my deepest fears of ghostly interaction made real in sound. Terrifying? You betcha! Riveting? For me, surprisingly, yes! For you, yes, but not so surprisingly. Just check it.

Also, ya might check out NYC’s “Jollies Records” bandcamp page for some adventurous electronica-adjacent soundscapes, too. Fairly OM-flavored from the start, JR has been around a li’l less than a year, and it’ll be interesting to see where they’re headed!
- Ryan Masteller
Tabs Out
February 11, 2020