• Muzai Records


Detroit based composer Pete Bastian has been a prolific entity on the experimental music front, to say the least. Under the guise of King Shoji, there is an entire Bandcamp dedicated to his techno-organic explorations.

We as a label also were fortunate enough to release three of his works in quick succession; Black Rainbow Machine, Vortex and CHERUB/DEMON on varying formats; including the humble Minidisc.

But a change in Bastian’s approach to composing, leading to an audible shift in his works, led to the King Shoji name being retired and instead comes Death Genesis; the eponymous debut of power electronics out today digitally and on CDR through MUZAI Records.

“I have always viewed death as simply the beginning of another form of existence,” Bastian writes, “and that it is an endless cycle – death being a genesis for a new life on another astral plane. The word ‘Genesis’ has also had a place in my life it seems; Sega Genesis being my first console, Genesis Breyer P-Orridge of Throbbing Gristle. It has been in my life for a long time.”

The works of Death Genesis have been influenced by other power electronic composers such as Tim Drage and Lisa McKendrick of Isntses, Frame Rust and Controlled Bleeding – “anyone who makes some sort of cosmic connection with machines” in Bastian’s view – but Death Genesis also draws from free jazz, traditional Eastern music and even death metal.

“The use of chaotic noise, drones and atonality brings one that much closer to the Higher Power.”

Having moved from an assemblage of works more akin to harsh noise under this prior moniker, Death Genesis is something Bastian feels gives more control to the machines used in creating his works than the conductor like nature of King Shoji.

“For me, power electronics means giving complete control to sound machines. The operator becomes one with them and the sound machines take over any human thought in their powers. This, I feel, lends to the occult aspect of Death Genesis.

“Luigi Russolo and the Italo-Futurist movement has an immense impact on power electronics and its concepts.”

“Most of the set-ups consist of the operator setting up the machines, patching them, adjusting signal chains, levels, and simply letting them run wild, morphing and melting sonic waves with little to no human interference.”

Bastian’s results have become even more malevolent than his King Shoji catalogue. More maligned, visceral and sense of “auditory gore.”

Something that Bastian is happy to acknowledge and yet hopes the listener sees and hears the beauty of the gore, and the goriness of its beauty.

With compositions ranging from 10+ minutes, to the five-piece musical suite of “Death Genesis (Finale), there may be some apprehension to unsuspecting listeners, but the length of the tracks is integral to the meditative aspect of the recording/listening process.

“I want the listener to feel that cosmic connection. That can’t be properly achieves in three minutes or less.”

Death Genesis is available on CDR and through all leading digital platforms.

#deathgenesis #detroitmusic #newmusic #powerelectronics

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