If I had to choose my favorite release of 2012 already, just a few months in, it would probably be Dustin Wong’s stellar Dreams Say, View, Create, Shadow Leads, on Thrill Jockey Records. The album’s title gives a little hint to the inspiration of the music – dreams – and the continuous ebb and flow of the music only support the active dream like state induced by these tunes. Dustin released an ambitious double CD debut Infinite Love in 2010 and was in the Baltimore-based band Ponytail.
If you’re not aware of Dustin Wong’s artistic approach – he is a master of taking bits of guitar, looping these sounds, and then layering these loops to construct songs. This aesthetic, to me, brings to mind Steve Reich’s Electric Counterpoint played by Pat Metheny, but, more akin to ten recordings of Electric Counterpoint all played at once, layered, and slightly off center, but even more incredible sounding than you would imagine. There’s only a minimal reliance of voice and percussion (…and I’m not convinced the percussion sounds aren’t his guitar anyway), so basically the record is all guitar all the time, but it doesn’t always sound that way. I’m not complaining that it’s all guitar - It’s amazing.
If you haven’t heard Dustin Wong before, the following two videos will give you an idea of what his inventive audio is all about. The first video is the last track from the new album and the second video is a live performance.
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