Backward-Masked Fave from Half-Gig Compilation

Closing out the week with one more track recommendation from Wein, Weib und Gesang, the Kikapu netlabel’s massive new, nearly five-hour compilation of ambient music and its more rhythmic derivations. “Madison,” by the System Boot, is a montage of tones, the most prominent of which slope tremulously and quickly to a close. Those quick and wispy edges to the sound fragments are the marks of backward masking, and “Madison” is an etude for that classic tool in the tape-music composer’s toolbox. System Boot is a pseudonym for Allen Morrisson, who recorded one of Kikapu’s first releases, the eight-track Feather Shredder EP. You can hear premonitions of “Madison” in that set’s “F.M.A.D.,” but on the whole the earlier collection was more concerned with the elastic jitters of video-game soundtracks. Time has passed, Wein, Weib is Kikapu’s 72nd release, and System Boot’s “Madison” is more composerly, less focused on visceral shudders and more on lovely layering. Download “Madison” here and visit

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