Fictions and Poetics is a project from Anthony Paul Kerby, a Canadian ambient musician that runs the DataObscura label. Although he has released several albums under various pseudonyms over the last fifteen years, this project is a more recent venture in his body of work. Intersections is the third Fictions and Poetics album since the debut in 2015.
Compared to Kerby’s other projects (e.g. The Circular Ruins, Nunc Stans, etc.), Fictions and Poetics moves away from traditional ambient compositions and into the realm of glitchy, abstract experimentalism. I think it’s an interesting side to his music, but it may be a surprise to those mainly familiar with his other work.
Intersections is a challenging, complex album that can be demanding at times, due to its detailed nature and quick changes in sound as elements are brought in and layered throughout each track. At lower volumes, much of the detail is blurred and the album masquerades as polite background music. When I’m in the right mood, I can turn the volume up and marvel at how carefully each track was constructed. I found this necessary to fully appreciate what Kerby has done here.
Some of the elements used here are: fractured melodies, samples of water, backwards loops, bells, looped drones, distorted rings, feedback, whirring and buzzing sounds, theremin-esque sounds, treated lo-fi sounds, broken glitches, and gliding synth melodies. The tone of the album ranges from playful optimism, to melancholy, to something chaotic and disorienting. As with everything else I’ve heard from Kerby, the production quality is very high.
Intersections is a powerful work that I’d recommend to ambient fans looking for something adventurous or those that enjoy contemporary glitch-tinged electronic music. I enjoyed the album greatly and look forward to hearing more from this project.
The album is available from Bandcamp.