COELACANTH
MUD WALL
HMS003 CD Helen Scarsdale

Vital Weekly 430 reviewed by Frans de Waard

I am altogether not too sure if Helen Scarsdale is really somebody and is really running an agency, but apperentely it's the name of a nice label. I missed out on their first release, by Jim Haynes, but the second third and third release make up things. As noted before Coelacanth is the work of Jim Haynes and Loren Chasse. Noted in the review of 'Mud Wall' in Vital Weekly 407. So is this a new CD then or a re-issue? I guess it's neither. It's rather an expanded version of the Mystery Sea CDR, with some extra twenty minutes of material, mainly placed at the beginning. Loren and Jim collected a whole bunch of organic material in the studio, like wood and metal and started scraping them. The sounds are fed through a whole bunch of delay and reverb units, until a thick, waving pattern of sound started vibrating the studio walls. A careful rumbling of objects takes place over the course over forty minutes and off and on they seem to be using field recordings of water. There are some darker edges to be noted in this material, which fits the traditions of Small Cruel Party and Giancarlo Toniutti (though not as sparse as the later) of the older generation and Yannick Dauby, MNortham, and Seth Nehil of the newer lot. Good sturdy, earthy minimalism.

The review of the Mystery Sea CD-R by Frans de Waard, Vital Weekly 407

You may have never heard of Coelacanth, but it's the collaborative effort of Loren Chasse (whom you may know from the works in his own name) and Jim Haynes (who writes for The Wire and for Aquarius Records site). While this is released by Mystery Sea there is obviously some reference to the sea made. The band name is from a fish, a 400 million years old "living fossil" which mostly congregates in submarine caves. Loren and Jim collected a whole bunch of organic material in the studio, like wood and metal and started scraping them. The sounds are fed through a whole bunch of delay and reverb units, until a thick, waving pattern of sound started vibrating the studio walls. A careful rumbling of objects takes place over the course over forty minutes and off and on they seem to be using field recordings of water. Maybe not as peaceful as some of the other Mystery Sea releases: it seems that there is a darker edge about this release, a more unearthy machine-like deep end hum. Soundwise this gets quite close to the old Small Cruel Party sound, and since he's long gone, it's good to have something like that again.