Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Portal "Lost in the Translation" cd-r (self released/2002)

It is a snowy night here on Long Island so I figured I'd do a late night (well late for this guy) upload. This offering is rather off beat but to me it really exemplifies what I love about the music that people make in their bedrooms. Being free from whatever scene aesthetics that may dominate people's attitudes to create and express themselves; music of this kind that doesn't really exist beyond the bedroom really excites me because it is completely uninhibited and it does whatever it wants to. Especially in the case of Portal to me it is documentation of a brilliant, creative musician exploring a myriad of ideas in his own unique way which is the complete opposite of what the musician is generally known for. Portal was the home recording side project of Contra guitarist Stephe Cooper. While Contra was known for furiously fast pissed off hardcore punk that relied on politically charged lyrics and a generally bare bones attack musically speaking; Portal was a project that explored prog/math rock, lsynth/midi music, kraut rock and even lo fi hardcore punk. Imagine taking the Mahavishnu Orchestra and cross it with Sonic Youh, Black Flag, Kraftwerk, Battles and Bjork's more experimental work and that should give you a rough idea. Cooper self released two Portal cd-rs both packaged in a DVD case. The first was a self titled 5 song ep and the second release which is posted here is the full length effort Lost in the Translation.
Publish Post

Lost in the Translation contains 13 tracks of tunes the run the gamut of genres explored and most of simply defies explanation. There are electronic bleeps and beeps that remind me of video game music but moments later you can get hit a with blast of guitar feedback only to be wrapped in a bordering psychedelic, jammy guitar freak out or even a frantic sound collage. Then there are surprise forays into a brand of lo fi hardcore punk that sounds like 5th generation bootleg Rorschach recording not too mention the Inside Out and Cave In covers that appear on the recording. Portal is not for everyone but for those that can brave the journey it is certainly a worthwhile trip to take

In addition to Portal and the aforementioned Contra, Cooper was also in the hardcore band Church of the Rowdy (with members of On the Might of Princes and Porcelain Decay) and later on he went on to be in two projects that were similar in scope to what Portal was doing but outside of the bedroom by way of B-Camel and the more lo fi basement art pop of Squeaky Bandits.

Lost in the Translation track listing:
1.The Printer Song
2. Hi Jonathon, How Are You? What's Up?
3. Minor Details
4. Queen Pineapple
5. (Excersion 1) Gina Opium
6. Validation
7. The Splitting of Our Species
8. (Excursion 2) Disappearance of the Spoons
9. All Around Me
10. No Spirtual Surrender *(Inside Out cover)
11. The End of Our Rope *(Cave In cover)
12. In the Land of Grey and Pink
13. Untitled

Download Here

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