During the first stretch of social distancing, Frank Baugh (Sparkling Wide Pressure) and Matthew Sage produced Birthmark, an uncanny pastoral gothic transmission of smeared melodies and interstitial rumblings. Created through a process of correspondence and layering, the album feels like an amassing of history like sedimentary soils, a disrupting of that history like a landslide or a well digging, a feeding back the past into the present, tainted water desalinating as it passes through a layer of carbon coal and computer chips. Flickers of banjo and guitar are overgrown with radio chattering brush and debris, birds and boys whistling in harmony, voices ping in the static, bouncing between rhythmic loops and clattering signals like lost friends. Terrible and awesome walls of distortion peel through the valleys, leaving behind leveled rumination, a few screens sprayed with static, and only those few trees left with deep wide true roots.
samples, synthesizer, bass, guitar, banjo
whistle, voice, percussion
synthesizer, autoharp, organ, guitar, percussion,
banjo, field recordings, voice, radio
recorded in Illinois and Tennessee in 2020
visual elements by Danny Greene and Frank Baugh