A 10 track ambient album (35m 27s) — released March 27th 2020 on Gusstaff Records

Legendary album of Jacaszek from 2009, first time on vinyl, 180g, gatefold, with downloadcode

PENTRAL (lat: inside, spirit, temple)

Michal Jacaszek's new project is an attempt to describe a gothic church interior by means of sounds. A temple owes its special atmosphere not only to visual elements but also to characteristic acoustics – reverb, enhancing and prolonging a slightest whisper into infinity. Jacaszek spent several days in three Gdansk historic churches (Oliwa Cathedral, St. Nicolas' church, St. Mary's Basilica) recording chanting, organs, and also a broad spectrum of accidental noises. Source sounds were were used only as a stimulus which releases the sound of the whole inside, and as such, they were consequently retouched in the post production process. Studio work and also the atmosphere of melody and arrangements were subordinate to the idea of portraying the church as a place filled with distant mysteries, a huge music instrument.

Divided into ten parts, it could be said that ‚Pentral’ is an uneasy listening experience, throwing the listener violently at times with almost overwhelming dynamic contrasts; what begins as a slow and tense build seemingly created from sample based recordings suddenly explodes into an unrelenting, shimmering wall of discordance, sounding like a hundred church organs screaming out. The compositions have all the claustrophobia of the nastier end of Scott Walker’s ‚The Drift’ arrangements, yet there does seem to be some light at the end of the tunnel – even in its most distressing moments there is, within the ethereal racket, something of an uplifting optimism. While ‚Pentral’ does contain passages of melodic beauty such as those found on ‚Treny’, this is a journey that is more rooted in atonal explorations. It has more of a ‚found sound’ source material feel, which in part comes from Jacaszek’s use and capitalization on accidental noises captured whilst recording in the church environments. „Part III” for instance develops into a absolutely jaw-dropping choral arrangement, all laced in background static and percussive, treated piano recordings, never overreaching, never trying too hard to overstate. Elsewhere we find pieces which attack with an intent to terrify; „Part VI” is a schizophrenic composition, frantically and without warning cutting between sparse, low-end tension and more pummeling organ clusters – the unexpected bursts of dissonance being on a parallel with the noise blasts of Sutcliffe Jugend and early Whitehouse. But this is not a noise album by any stretch of the imagination. Ghostly operatic voices and unexpected minimal use of percussion colour the low organ tones and treated sounds, mixing unsettling feelings with equal amounts of perplexity and intrigue. It’s as much about the silence in the pieces as it is the compositions; within its minimal moments, what comes through it the vastness of the church spaces, the slow decay of the sounds entirely owing to the environments in which they were recorded. It’s dark and it’s certainly desolate at times, but in other moments the pieces purvey a sense of these buildings’ strength and stability – these historic churches have stood the test of time. - Boomkat

Recorded in three of Gdansk’s oldest churches, Pentral is an attempt to describe a Gothic church interior in sound. It’s certainly easy enough while listening to visualise ribbed and vaulting domes, smoky depths and guttering candles – hell, maybe even a transept or a clerestory or two. Found sounds mingle with strings chopped and modulated in a Murcof-like fashion, scraps of incredibly moving (or, in the case of ‚VIII’, very eerie) choral singing, tolling bells and digital squelches embedded deep in the mix. Aside from those trouser-spoiling organ blasts, this is a journey so subtle that by the time you reach the meditative climax of ‚X’ the most scant of editions to the sound design seem epic. I’ve no idea where Jacaszek is headed next, but I’m going there too. - Chris Power Drowned In Sound

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