Wild Terrier Orchestra: Even The Chimera (digital, Haunter Records, March 2022)

Well, this is something delightfully strange.

I’ve encountered Dimitris Papadatos as Jay Glass Dubs, and I found his work pleasant enough but it never quite grabbed me. This new alias is, to me, a much more distinctive and interesting proposition.

The first of the two long tracks opens with a crash of percussion, a tinkling of chimes, the muffled sound of a jazzy trumpet melody as if overheard from the next room, wordless chanting, and a hazy synth thrum, all in quick succession. And so it continues, with fragments of melody played on some kind of wind instrument; syllables of sound poetry; echoey drums; a different voice chanting, this time with words in Greek; a weird kind of panting/barking sound; a distant bell; and so on. All of this layered, the elements seemingly responding to each other. It has a loose, improvised feel. The mood is somehow both laid back and yet determinedly present: this is not music that fades into the background.

The second of the two long tracks is slightly more intense, setting out its stall with a buzzing analogue synth sound, and incorporating a winding bass guitar line, amongst other things. Prominent use is made of a ney. But it’s a mistake to try to understand this record by cataloguing its parts, because the magic is in the construction and the interplay and the cumulative effect. It feels like you can turn this music around and around in your head and inspect from different angles and it will constantly reward you with something new. I have no idea how to categorize this, but I do know that it is a very special thing.

I bought this via the label’s Bandcamp page.

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