Eternal champion otherworldly club music on their ETERNAL 002 compilation
After having just gushed over them last week, Sydney label ETERNAL have gone and proved exactly why they are one of the most fascinating purveyors of electronic goodness around. They’ve just dropped their second compilation championing their unique brand of ‘deconstructed club music’, featuring upcoming producers from the local underground and beyond.
ETERNAL arose in 2017, founded by Sydney experimental producers ptwiggs and Grasps. Their first release as a label was the first in their eponymous compilation series, featuring ptwiggs and Grasps themselves as well as the likes of Marcus Whale, and a number of up-and-coming Sydney producers. This was followed by a five track EP from Portugese producer GYUR, a beast of rhythmic noise resembling dance music from an alternate dimension. With their second eponymous compilation, ETERNAL continue the trend of taking the envelope with ‘electronic music’ written on it and pushing it more than a rowdy, stinky moshpit.
Otro starts the comp with ‘2KWorld’, a pounding bass track with soaring, trance-like synth lead, at times sounding as though a scratched CD with two songs playing at the same time is skipping erratically. ‘Hide Jekyll’ by EVITCELES oozes evil industrial atmosphere with a music concrete-like focus on samples and effects to create a menacing wall of syncopated noise. Night Dives brings things to hardcore town on ‘Mugam’, with a rapid, pulsing kick driving layers of acidic arpeggios and warped vocal samples – a little like a long lost Bloody Fist tape went to hell and back.
‘Neural Network’ from the wonderfully named HOT WAVS takes a turn into acid territory, with squelchy synth loops over absolutely monstrous and overblown beats, before taking a turn with some melancholy yet distorted synth melodies. Jonathan Castro swoops in to spook things up with ‘Upaymarka’, a track that would sound right at home in Silent Hill with it’s uncomfortably dissonant drone and rising soundscape of demonic crunches.
N1L has another hardcore offering on ‘WAKALIIIWOOOD’, a track that switches from uncomfortable soundscapes to breakneck kicks and acidic booms, with a few orchestral hits for good measure. Dualism‘s ‘Burn’ shifts between brooding orchestral plucks and noisy blasts of bass and a defiant brass melody, presenting one of the most cinematic tracks of the whole compilation. At the tail end, Wi-Fiji ends things on a serene note with ‘Mist’, with reverberated and overlapping flute melodies that wouldn’t be out of place on a Zelda soundtrack.
Once again Eternal have knocked it out of the park, presenting a compilation full of sound experiments that you won’t hear anywhere else. The human body doesn’t have the amount of limbs or the motor capacity to dance to these tracks; instead, it’s music for sitting down and appreciating, perhaps when your mind is at its most unsettled.
ETERNAL 002 is a little time capsule of everything amazing about Sydney electronic music, and shows exactly why this label is one of the most unique around.
Words by MAX LEWIS