CD-R, Cold Graey, 2007
Recorded towards the end of 1997 and into 1998, “Opus” is the work on an unnamed Russian tape experimentalist using the Indu Mezu moniker. For this release he used a pair of tape decks, a Casio M100 keyboard, a broken guitar, some self-made gear and lo-fi recording equipment to create his unique brand of experimental ambient music. Remastered and released on the Cold Graey label, “Opus” is limited to just 57 copies with the first 11 coming with an inlay.
Based mostly around his passion for tape manipulation, “Opus” is a weird mix of retro soundtrack artiness, psychedelic experimentation, snippets of traditional, pop and rock music and an assortment of weird tape generated sounds. Swinging between a sort of arty 70’s Eastern European cartoon soundtrack, densely abstract psychedelic weirdness and more structured but still experimental tape and sample collages, this Russian artist creates music with a retro-futuristic feel. Given that no computers were used in the recording of this album, the sound produced is very lo-fi, even down to the constant tape hiss throughout.
On the 70’s arty soundtrack side of things, “Call me back” and “Another Thaj” show a melancholic tension with a low-key but disorientating barrage of dream-like traffic sounds and oppressive futuristic experimentalism respectively. “Restaurant and Bridge”, “Dusy Heavy” and the title track showcase Indu Mezu’s tape manipulation skills through a varied collection of mangled samples while “Rise and Shine” and “The Force” offer his own brand of tape produced drone ambience. There are also more conventional dark ambient tracks on “Opus”, most notably “Damn Fly” and “To lpd, p” which show a subtler side to his work, the former with a dark air of tension and the latter with a lighter but increasingly tense atmosphere, both feature more structure and more attention to detail. Elsewhere, it just seems like he wants to have some fun with “Rhythmic”.
Indu Mezu’s “Opus” offers a different take on electronic music, dispensing with computers and soft synths to get back to using old experimental techniques and simpler, but still skilful, sound creation and manipulation. As you might expect from the way this album was recorded, it is mostly very experimental and occasionally abstract. Elsewhere however, there are tracks which offer a new variant of dark ambience with a retro twist.
— Paul Lloyd