Alphaxone — Dystopian Gate (Jan. 14, 2020)
⇓■⇓ Alphaxone serves us a warm and inviting album about the contrast between the dystopian and the dream of a better future among the stars.
⇓■⇓ With a breath of fresh air from the oxygen tank you gaze over the rooftops towards a red sky. The colonization ship glimmers, leaving for dreams of a better future. Below, the city has turned dead silent after curfew. You fish a cred stick out of your pocket, enough for this months oxygen supply. At this rate you're ten lifetimes away from a resettlement ticket. Or 6 months if you play your cards right in the underworld.
⇓■⇓ Recommended for fans of Space Ambient and Warm Analogue pads.
Location: Tehran, Iran
Album release: January 14, 2020
Record Label: Cryo Chamber
1. Lost in the Moment 5:11
2. Falling Time 7:08
3. Out of Source 6:57
4. Frozen Light 4:50
5. Mysterium 5:20
6. Hollow Lands 5:26
7. Dissolving Horizon 8:29
8. Underworld 4:27
9. A Profound Void 9:25
Mehdi Saleh: Written, Produced, Performed
Simon Heath: Artwork & Mastering
JANUARY 31, 2020 ~ MIKE
⇓■⇓ Alphaxone is Iranian Mehdi Saleh, a dark ambient composer and performer, who brings his own twists to that expanding genre. Dystopian Gate is his 11th or so solo release, though he has recorded several joint releases, singles, and EPs, and has also contributed to compilations.
⇓■⇓ The album focuses on deep drones and washes, shored up by dissonant waves and walls. Underneath and around are shifting background elements, echoing percussion, and crackling static. There is a distinct lo~fi feel. The result would not fit comfortably into the outer space or primaeval ambient buckets. Instead, this is industrial / urban ambient. In it, buildings have walls that breathe, while menacing thunder reigns over dark cityscapes.
⇓■⇓ Alphaxone is just one of many unconventional modern arrangers from Iran who are slowly coming to prominence outside of their home country. Compilations such as Visions of Darkness and Anthology of Persian Experimental Music are great overviews of modern Iranian experimental music, where ambient, industrial, techno, and electroacoustic stylings mix with more traditional influences. It is terrific to finally be able to hear what these artists have to say.