Cyberchump: "Ocean Wrecking"


By George Bass | 5 March 2012

It’s only natural that a duo should halve honours on a double album, and ambient noodlers Cyberchump have done just that, cutting Their Moment of Perfect Happiness right down the middle. The first half: playful electronica, friendly clicks. The second: hangover tunes; barely audible drone tracks that you could put yourself in suspended animation to. Mark G.E. and Jim Skeel seem to be preparing themselves for the ultimate night out, giving equal time to both optimism and recovery. It’s conscientiousness like this that drove Gary Langan, founder of Art of Noise, to describe their debut Dreams Groove as “one of 88 albums you must hear.”

Both Skeel and G.E. use the dark tracks to soon produce jewels like “Ocean Wrecking,” written to highlight marine noise pollution for the 2009 Hydrophonia festival. However, the Rainbow Warrior vibes end there: “Wrecking” is designed to scare any noise polluters swiftly back to shore, descended from the same drone horror as Xela’s The Dead Sea (2006). Featuring gull caws, plucked strings, and everything else you’d expect of a sea shanty, there’s about a minute of calm before the sea sucks back, petering out into black mud. Dolphins scream while guitars float in a tide pool, tangled with squid and contemplating revenge. It’s an original, unnerving sound—not as engaging as, say, a Drew Barrymore family film about the plight of innocent sea life, but a neat way of repelling pirates if you didn’t pack an RPG-7.