by Slav Ka
Donald Rumsfeld once famously quipped that in life there are "known unknowns and unknown unknowns". Well, allow me to be just a tad Rumsfeldian here and argue that in electronic music there are tracks that are "predictably mind bending" and "unpredictably mind bending". Predictably mind bending music aims to confuse and dislodge the listener, but does it so formulaically that you could almost see the artist behind the proverbial curtain, sweating and toiling in their attempts to manipulate. At best, it feels like an etude, but, more often, it feels forced, flat and leaves one with a headache rather than a bent mind.
J.Albert's Paradolia firmly belongs to the other category of music: unpredictably mind bending. You don’t see the man behind the curtain, you don’t glean any discernible formula or attempts at listener manipulation: you just hear a track that is wonderfully chaotic, full of textures, broken rhythms, and intermittent dubby explorations. It's a hot mess with alternating focal points and shifting emphasis that somehow manages to build momentum and propel itself forward while never resorting to the banal or traditional. It's orchestrated chaos. Mind bent. No headache.