Sone Institute - “Where Moth and Rust Consume”
(Front & Follow Records)
If Where Moth and Rust Consume were a film, the TV Guide description for the film would read:
A British misanthrope gatecrashes a poetry convention with a Casio keyboard and trolls/amazes the audience with tales of wildy vivid apathy and disturbing beauty.
The latest release from UK experimental electronic pop artist, Sone Institute, Where Moth and Rust Consume constantly walks the line between carefully crafted lyric, artistic composition, and devious “wouldn’t it be funny if” type experimentation, all of which comes together to create an album that I am enthralled by.
The opening track, I only exist, comes off as a pseudo-philosophical exploration of being. The speaker in the song repeats a refrain of:
“I only exist because you love me/
You will die the day I say goodbye/
I only exist because you love me/
Even though its a lie”
Is the speaker here Sone himself, or are we hearing an intangible concept personified, like love or God? Between the existential wonderings, disturbing imagery and unusual perspectives weave their way around the narrative.
Most other tracks on Moth and Rust are devoid of such probing queries, and instead offer contemplative electronic music tinted with variety and depth. Tracks such as Summer Lightning, The Devil Works in ASDA, and A Gilded Cage are filled with this brand of driving, buzzing electronica, laden with catchy, electro-pop beats and buzzing with synth detail. There is a delicate balance of pain and pleasure in these works that is hard to identify. One must undergo it in order to understand. The track What’s Bred in the Bone stands out as a worship of the preset rhythms and chord structures from those keyboards we all had as kids, while Winter is Dead is a looping found sound that slowly drowns in ambient waves.
Throughout the release, Sone Institute continues to shift and grow the sound of each selection, so that every experience is a new one - creating a complete, but varied experience, in what feels like just a taste of something much larger that has been going on for quite a long time without our knowledge. Overall, Where Moth and Rust Consume is a lot of things, and also none of those things. It’s a shouted statement in an empty room, and a platitude in the shadow of a deep loss. It’s a mercy kill, a long kiss goodnight, and joyful euthanasia. The release closes with a simple and short track entitled God Bless You, that features a vocal sample that repeats just that until the record ends. It never really ends, though.