Premiere: Autumn Casey – “This Is No Dream (Excerpt)”

Posted by on November 27, 2017

For its first release, American Damage — the Chicago imprint of occasional Decoder contributor Jordan Reyes — enlists experimental rocker and classically trained pianist Autumn Casey, who comes armed with a new long-form solo composition titled This Is No Dream. Usually of noise-rock duo Snakehole, a project that found itself during “a revelation on a trampoline in a do or die situation,” the intensity and range of her new solo effort is obviously less surprising than its striking sonic palette. Built from layers of piano and field recordings, the whole tape feels like tumbling through leaves, down dark hallways, or through hazy passages of decayed but still fecund memory. Voices and sounds dart in and out — cars, scraps of shouting and conversation, bells, toys, etc — the tape’s ostensible context mutating as their orientation shifts. Casey offers her own statement on the background for these recordings…

This Is No Dream takes its title from a line in Rosemary’s Baby during the scene Mia Farrow realizes that getting impregnated by the devil was really happening. That screamed phrase always resonated. It’s easy to be deep in a situation before noticing what is happening. This tape is my first experiment in crafting a long solo audio composition, which was also an automatic experience . . . I approached this tape the way I approach sculpture, which is intuition over time. I had an arsenal of field recordings from the past year during my transition from Miami to Philadelphia that I was able to weave in and around the piano. That was the base. The field recordings were from physical experiments with objects in my art studio, sounds at work, my mother, and the world outside — anything from daily life that made me pause. ”

Preorder This Is No Dream via American Damage.