Crate Digging: Aaron Dilloway – Concealed [Cassette]

Originally from 2007, this tape offers joys similar to Dilloway’s monumental 2012 LP Modern Jester, at a much humbler price. Aaron Dilloway is possibly my favorite “noise” artist of them all; he simply has a sense of it that is leagues above anyone else in the genre. The abrasive loops he cycles through are supremely cathartic, much more cathartic than anything by Merzbow the v. first time you “got into him.” There’s also one rather prolonged period of completely empty space on this tape, & I’m not sure why, but the sounds of nothing except tape hiss are kind of brutal in their own way. Perhaps the harshest form of noise of all – you got nowhere to go during it ‘cept ‘round-‘n-‘round yr own skull. After this silence, the loop that opens the second track (my favorite) – “Ain’t you got no candy,” it goes sing-songly – can be genuinely disturbing for the unprepared. Then darkness takes over, & there is another period of very little sound. Then gradually it gets even sicker. These sounds revulse me the closer I pay attention to them, but that’s exactly what I came to this tape for. Nerds of a different stripe won’t understand. Disappointingly to me, the tape’s final track feels more epilogue than climax, but altogether this is the finest Dilloway tape I’ve personally gripped so far. Side B repeats the same program. Perhaps we have reached the end of an era, because Dilloway’s Hanson Records maintains its official online storefront on Bandcamp. Look for this tape there.

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