Machine Listener – Colubrid

9.25.19 by Ryan Masteller

Matthew Gallagher is the Horse Whisperer of synthesizers, the understanderer of connections and knobs, the mind-melder of patches and loops. He is the Machine Listener, the one who gets close, inclines his ear, and heeds the mutterings of the physical components of his musical gear. Only then can he begin to feel his recordings as they take shape in his brain, to conceptualize the far-out spaceship console compositions he will be creating while utilizing his, ahem, machines. Does he see the blinking lights and the moving levers and gears? Of course he does.

On “Colubrid” he may as well be the Snake Whisperer, because Colubridae contains “51 percent of all known living snake species” (thanks Wikipedia!). That’s a snake on the cover too, another digi-pixel masterpiece from Hausu house artist (is that redundant?) Maxwell Allison. It winds through the ruins of a city or something, doing its snake-thing through blown-out apartment windows and heaps of rubble. At times, Machine Listener seems to soundtrack this exact movement, as on the IMPROPERLY TITLED “Dirigible,” which should either instead be the title track or “Snake Moving Snakily through Future Wasteland That Has Returned to the Snakes” or something. Otherwise he keeps to his future-techno/computerworld lane, revving BPMs when necessary, slowing it down to the relevant plinks and plonks when called for, and generally widening our perspective on snake activity in the VR realm.

As I mentioned if you were paying attention, “Colubrid” is set to become part of the Hausu Mountain family, receiving a September 27 release date. You can order it now if you want. And you want!