I have been listening to the amazing sounds of Decomposure
for over 4 years now, but I have never gotten the opportunity
to review an album. Needless to say when I spotted his most recent
release Eating Chicken in the stack for Hybrid I was like
a kid on Christmas.
If you've never heard a song by Decomposure let me give you a
little background. Caleb Mueller (aka Decomposure) is not
your typical musician. What he is is a true artist in musician
form. Sampling sounds from all spectrums and every piece of daily
life gives each song a unique experience. He's just a single man
with a smorgasbord of instruments.
Having been a participant in the creation of the music video
for "Readymade" naturally puts a soft spot in my heart
for this song. Caleb held an open call for content when composing
the video, allowing for any and all fans to submit short clips
representing some part of the song. He then blended all clips
together into one crazy video (which can be seen on YouTube).
The beauty of the video project came from the construction of
the song. That's right construction. A steady beat foundation
lets the harmonies tower above a few levels of hand claps, kitchen
pot taps and tambourine shakes. Now keep in mind, without being
in the same room as Caleb one can only imagine what actually makes
each sound in his music. So these are guesses.
"How It Happened" is almost too complex to break down;
one moment you're shaking your hips back and forth and the next
you're drifting away. While a slow sashaying beat dances throughout
the number, a break in the beat creates a nice opening for a sultry
piano/vocal harmony and the lyrics "I can't handle the truth/I
thought I could/but I couldn't make it through" softly repeating.
I think it was about a year ago when Decomposure premiered "Safety
Scissors" on his Blank Squirrel Podcast. It was then that
the obsession started. This is one fun song. Robotic voices mix
with human and industrial beats are mashed up with bass thuds.
The tempo stays hip-hip and synthesized. You'll want to give this
one a few listens, just to take it all in. Memories of a happy
childhood come rushing back with the song "Selsh" and
the uplifting piano melody that seems to mold so well with the
"ba-ba-badum-da's" echoing through the vocals. Then
life takes a 180 when "Black Snow" starts up. A slightly
somber tone is bolstered by synth'd notes and quick taps creating
a deep soundscape.
Near the end of Eating Chicken you'll find "Island"
and a Morse code of synth notes and "ba-ba's" creating
a background. The song finally breaks loose with a strong pulse
of bass and more industrial effects creating a slight head bump.
One of the many things Caleb does is blend straight up hip-hop
rapping with soft harmonies and has them sound fairly awesome.
There are so many layers to this song that one would fear the
removal of just one and having it change completely.
This album makes for over 5 hours of music I have from Decomposure
and each record is a unique piece of art. You can't own just one.
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