Published Jul 11, 2018Toronto's Rita Mikhael has been slinging powerful blasts of noisy electronic music for the better part of this decade. Her unholy missives — which for the most part fly the E-Saggila standard — were first disseminated via her own Summer Isle imprint, which she co-founded with Max "Death Kneel" Klebanoff. More recently, the producer has seen her work released by the equally dank Opal Tapes, Aught Void and Bank Records labels.
Mikhael returns to Bank for her first full-length LP, a writhing collection of half-decomposed techno and desolate electro tracks. Ironically named Dedicated to Sublimity, the atmosphere here is far from uplifting.
The punishing, noisy techno blast of opening track "Brunette Cistern" combines atmospheric, barely discernible melodic motifs beneath a coruscating tapestry of beats, bass and bomb fragments. "Glass Wing" is a rhythmic romp beneath the static grey sky of a William Gibson novel. The ghosts of broken mechanisms haunt the foreground of "Reputation," their clattering cries beating back a pounding sea of reverberating drums. "Your Hole" is filled with a sinister chatter that is pulverized into grainy waves of drone. An organ-like melody swoops in to provide somewhat of a respite from the icy spray, worming its way into the listener's subconscious as the proceedings come to a close.
With this record, Mikhael demonstrates that she's capable of producing both skull-rattling, beat-driven techno, as well as a more introspective and atmospheric brand of sonic material. Woven into both of these approaches is her distinct vision, which is both beguiling and ferocious. (Bank Records)