Q. R. Ghazala ‎– There Is A Secret Garden

Sound Theater ‎– 1
Cassette, c60


A1 Soma God-Flesh On The Earth 9:10
A2 Foxolove Bells, Ringing Night 5:18
A3 Slips Of Yew Silver'd 6:32
A4 Dreamworld Painter, Psilocybe 7:25
B1 Mandragora, Witch's Haunt 11:15
B2 Smoke-Ghost In The Cedars 3:05
B3 Father Peyote, Guiding Light 4:36
B4 Poppy Singing Songs Of Sleep 6:15
B5 Jupiters Henbane, Parted Mists 3:00


The sounds of this recording were produced on electronically modified human voice synthesizers,talking educational toys of the speak and spell series


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June 3, 2012
This is an album of very similar sounding works of noise. Created by an eviscerated Speak & Spell machine (and I suspect enhanced by some breed of reverb unit, although this is speculation), this is full of raw electrical noises which ping & crackle, spit & spark, yet all somehow remain in a discernable rhythmic form & never outstay their welcome. "Soma, God-Flesh On The Earth" has several layers, a distant hum, a light trill & various subtle moans over which a hollow crackling spit is heard. "Foxglove Bells, Ringing Night" is a more amorphous thing with plenty of hollow booms & colourful arrays of highly active electronic noise which changes and mutates through a series of strange, almost sub-vocal moans and trills, Whalesong from another dimension. "Slips Of Yew, Silver'd" again creaks, crackles & groans in a series of ever-transmuting, yet somehow always natural soundscapes. A little less brittle & abrasive than the previous things, this is a journey through a more shattered crystaline sub-terrain like ARCANE DEVICE's - less passive & naturally contoured, more full of sharp edges & deflected light jags. "Dreamworld Painter, Psilocybe" closes the first side sounding more Industrial than most of those who work under that title. This consists of a grey machine ambience over which sounds ping & scratch & steam in hot electric knots before it gradually drifts apart into a myriad substructures, dissolving, then regrowing into almost fractal variations.
The second side starts with "Mandragora, Witches Haunt", a more minimal background over which the raw other-worldly noises chitter & pop like globules of tar in a sucking pit. Other noises grizzle & fry, moving amongst the sounds like some explorer hacking his way through a dark, unwelcoming slime-dripping jungle. The atmosphere grows from light to dark & back, moving gradually as if with some single-minded intent. It grows into a motor-revving cacophony of noise, a machine angry yet beautific, expressing it's flightless feelings. "Smoke-Ghost In The Cedars" returns to a more conforming, rhythmic sound, still shimmering with the dark jewels of this shiny raw electricity. It booms & chitters, while away in the distance the ragged ambience of electronics whispers like wind howling through the eaves. "Father Peyote, Guiding Light" is a spiky, creaky thing, the sound of cybernetic fowl greeting the rising sun on some far off, alien world. It bellows it's noises, surrounded by a sparkling white bath of crystaline structures, a mock version of the Star Ship Enterprise's bridge, alive with AI computer noise. "Poppy Singing Songs Of Sleep" is a lot more loud & raucous than the title might suggest, again using what sound like multiple layers of LFOs all working together to give a multifaceted jewel quality to it. It all changes direction without altering the sounds, becoming a damp, cavernous wonderland of sound, a journey through some place parallel to Cyberspace, yet more natural, as if the Console Jockey were riding the raw information streaming out of a Piezo-Quartz Standing Stone. The shortest track on the entire album "Jupiter's Henbane, Parted Mists" closes the second side, a huge confused cacophony of the Speak & Spell's twisted machine vocabulary, a robotic speaking in tongues which rakes claws of raw power noise down the delicate material of thin air.

Originally reviewed for Soft Watch.