I love music that is dark somber and dissonant. I’ve been this way ever since I discovered Massive Attack’s Mezzanine  and Portsihead’s self titled second album. Both those album were huge for me as far as expanding my horizons past rock music. Since these albums I have spent a serious amount of time seeking out more music in this vain and it always seems to come in the form of electronic based music like Aphex Twin, etc.

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Derek Piotr Raj Album Cover

Well now I have hit pay dirt with my discovery of Derek Piotr and his latest release Raj. Piotr is a Poland born sound designer who is now based in the New England area and boy does he press the limits with song composition.  When the first track “Spine” started I thought I was listening to a terrifyingly tense scene from David Lynch’s Inland Empire  and after hearing the experimental noises going on in this song I was hooked. The craziness continues with the second track “Amendola”, but this time around Piotr introduces a vocal sample that is chopped and skewed over an industrial sounding beat.  Another highlight is “Karakum” (which translated means black sand) where you get to hear a little bit more of what I assume is Piotr’s voice. The slow rolling beat on this track is hypnotizing like Piotr is trying to implant some sort of evil message in your brain. The albums experimentation continues with beats that would fit in perfectly in with any of  Lynch’s films. The album closes with another killer track “Flow Through the Light” a song that makes me feel as if I am about to be sacrificed to the gods of all things gnarly.

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Imagine if Trent Reznor was actually still  edgy and instead of making lame club beats he continued to go down the dark experimental road. Raj is like a soundtrack for a David Fincher film on steroids. The thing that makes Piotr special is that he is able to create such experimental dissonant distorted sounds and incorporate them into a listenable song. Piotr takes you on journey through all the deepest darkest places in your mind and never stops probing at your consciousness. Listening to Raj makes you feel uneasy, but uneasy in a good way because the compositions included on Raj  are truly groundbreaking and are pushing the possibilities of what electronic music can be. I am excited to hear what new terrifying adventure Piotr’s future releases will take me on next.