Bass Communion — Pacific Codex
(Equation E=mc16, 2008, CD)
by Henry Schneider, Published 2008-10-01
Steve Wilson of Porcupine Tree has his hands in any number of diverse musical projects. One of them, Bass Communion, is his ambient drone explorations with Theo Travis. Bass Communion has been recording since 1998 and Pacific Codex is their latest release. Limited to 975 numbered copies (mine is #944), it comes as a box set containing a CD, a 5.1 surround sound audio DVD, and a 36-page booklet of beautiful ocean photos taken at various angles and under different lighting conditions. The disc contains two tracks, “Pacific Codex 1” and “Pacific Codex 2,” each roughly 20 minutes long. Steve Hubback is a percussionist and metal sculptor. He fashions beautifully odd and bizarre organically shaped cymbals and other metallic constructions. On January 19, 2006 Steve and Theo were given the opportunity to perform on some of Hubback’s sculptures and the session was recorded. Wilson spent the next three months in the studio processing, editing, and layering the material to create this gorgeous CD. “Pacific Codex 1” ebbs and flows, first luring you in to the water and then sucking you down and carrying you off to the nether reaches of the Pacific. Then on “Pacific Codex 2” you find yourself awakening in Neptune’s secret lair trying to find your way back home. Not having a surround sound system I cannot judge the quality of the DTS disc, but the CD is a soothing listening experience, much like Jeff Greinke’s foggy soundscapes. Definitely worth investigating.
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