Cold Cave / Genesis Breyer P-Orridge / Black Rain, “Comprehension”

JP Basileo

To accompany their sold-out Brooklyn show at The Wick this past Wednesday, Cold Cave, Genesis Breyer P-Orridge, and Black Rain have collaborated on a three-song cassette on Heartworm Press, entitled Rebellion is Over, with a vinyl release to follow. The single from the tape, “Comprehension” is a thumping synthetic coma with P-Orridge’s subdued, almost half-sleeping monologue at the forefront of a fenestra of curiously hopeful sounds. The music only bolsters the grimly fantastical nature of the lyrics, which grasp for the co-operation and, well, comprehension, of the title (and the audience), but hint at its impossibility. Chime tones and Badalamenti-esque synths ooze in and out of the background, and melt into the ticking percussion, almost clocklike in nature, perhaps pointing towards the matter of time in being “close to comprehension.” It’s a conceptually broad work, able to speak to most, either with the supposed message of the lyrics, or at the very least, its infectiously pleasant musicality. Sullenly, perhaps defeated, they go completely morbid, as P-Orridge mumbles, “I’m puzzled, looking at a firing squad,” but the track’s unknowable optimism always returns with “We are close to comprehension.”

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